Drought-like conditions, firefighters on alert for grass fires - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Drought-like conditions, firefighters on alert for grass fires

(Source: MGN Online) (Source: MGN Online)
CALCASIEU PARISH, LA (KPLC) -

Many of us are already seeing patches of brown grass in our yards and its part of the drought-like conditions we've been experiencing here in Southwest Louisiana.

For firefighters, it means they're keeping a watchful eye on grass fires.

"We haven't seen a whole lot at the beginning of the season so far, but it is slowly picking up," said Daniel Duhon, Carlyss Fire Department Captain.

Every year firefighters tackle thousands of wildfires across the country. In Carlyss, firefighters say they start to keep an eye out for grass fires as the weather gets warmer.

And while firefighters here say they haven't seen an increase in grass fires yet, they are on high alert.

"The dry weather poses a challenge due to it dries out the grass a lot quicker, combined with the high winds it will cause the fire to spread a lot quicker," added Duhon.

While no parish in Louisiana is under a burn ban, Lake Charles Fire Prevention Chief Wayne Rigmaiden says that could change.

"But they can occur when we run through some droughts," said Rigmaiden.

The last time Lake Charles has seen at least an inch of rain was in February.

Today, we're nearly 9 inches below normal rainfall for the year.

"If the dry weather persists, if we don't get any more rain here in the future, it could happen," said Duhon.

But even before a burn ban is issued, firefighters make sure they're prepared.

Here at Carlyss, they even have what they call a 'brush buggy', which helps them get to grass fires.

"We are limited to where we can go with the bigger trucks so this helps us," said Carlyss Fire Chief James Stanley.

While they only use it about a half dozen times a year, it's important to have in areas like Carlyss.

"A large area that we cover is open fields and grassy areas, we tend to run a lot more grass fires and brush fires versus a structure fire," said Stanley.

But even though preparation is key firefighters say grass fire prevention is the best way to go.

Fire officials had a number of grass fire prevention tips from not throwing cigarette butts outside, to making sure fire pit and BBQ coals are cool before discarding.

Additional grass fire prevention tips here: http://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/kisatchie/home/?cid=fsbdev3_024701

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • TOUCHDOWN LIVE: Second round scores and highlights

    TOUCHDOWN LIVE: Second round scores and highlights

    Saturday, November 18 2017 1:13 AM EST2017-11-18 06:13:18 GMT

    Fifteen local high school football teams have reached the second round of the playoffs and tonight they all take the field in the hopes of advancing once again.

    More >>

    Fifteen local high school football teams have reached the second round of the playoffs and tonight they all take the field in the hopes of advancing once again.

    More >>
  • LC council member wants measures in place for pretrial bond reductions

    LC council member wants measures in place for pretrial bond reductions

    Saturday, November 18 2017 12:02 AM EST2017-11-18 05:02:18 GMT
    (Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)(Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)

    Months of undercover work led Calcasieu's Combined Anti-Drug Team (CAT) to perform a drug raid on two homes in Lake Charles back in late October. Six were arrested and booked, but one of those suspects was able to get back on the streets that same day, leaving many upset, including city council member Luvertha August. 

    More >>

    Months of undercover work led Calcasieu's Combined Anti-Drug Team (CAT) to perform a drug raid on two homes in Lake Charles back in late October. Six were arrested and booked, but one of those suspects was able to get back on the streets that same day, leaving many upset, including city council member Luvertha August. 

    More >>
  • CPSO handing out turkeys not tickets

    CPSO handing out turkeys not tickets

    Friday, November 17 2017 10:17 PM EST2017-11-18 03:17:42 GMT
    (Source: CPSO)(Source: CPSO)
    The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office teamed up with the owners of a local 5 Star convenience store to spread a little holiday cheer. Deputies were handing out Thanksgiving turkeys instead of tickets to citizens of the parish. Motorists would be pulled over for minor violations such as not wearing a seatbelt or speeding and instead of receiving a ticket, got a holiday turkey.  50 turkeys were donated to the Sheriff's Office for the event.  Copyright 2017 KPLC. All rights ...More >>
    The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office teamed up with the owners of a local 5 Star convenience store to spread a little holiday cheer. Deputies were handing out Thanksgiving turkeys instead of tickets to citizens of the parish. Motorists would be pulled over for minor violations such as not wearing a seatbelt or speeding and instead of receiving a ticket, got a holiday turkey.  50 turkeys were donated to the Sheriff's Office for the event.  Copyright 2017 KPLC. All rights ...More >>
Powered by Frankly