Forest Fire Activity Declines

by Gabe Bullard on May 17, 2008

Kentucky forestry officials say a wetter-than-usual spring has helped reduce the number of wildfires across the state.

The official spring fire season ended on April 30th. The first four months of the year saw more than 16-hundred fires that scorched nearly 19-thousand acres. After a surge in the last half of April, the number of wildfires has been declining.

Kentucky Division of Forestry spokesperson Diana Olszowy says above-average rainfall and the return of leaves to the trees has reduced the risk of major wildfires.

“If all of a sudden we get a drought or wind picks up and humidity drops again, you’ll go through a period where you’ll have some,” she says. “But the fires we’ve had over the last – well we haven’t had one in the last several days – over the last few days are minor, like an acre at the most.”

Olszowy says 63 percent of forest fires in Kentucky are intentionally set.

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