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Dry Weather Equals A Fire Danger
Updated May 5, 2013 12:11 AM | Filed under: WBIW News
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(VINCENNES) - A long dry spell is raising concerns about drought and more in the Wabash Valley.

More than half of Indiana is considered to be abnormally dry and drought conditions are now reported in southwestern Indiana.

The long dry weather is creating problems and worries.

Vincennes Township fire fighters rolled onto the scene of a barn fire south of of the city.

The fire at the Robert Vieke farm had already brought down the barn, so the fire department concentrated on keeping it from spreading.

The blaze was the result of a trash fire.

"A gentleman was burning trash in a barrel and it got into some dry grass and spread into his barn," said Vincennes Township Fire Chief Tim Smith.

Southern Knox County is on the edge of an area that is already being considered in moderate drought and that makes fire a big worry.

"We haven't had any significant rain for some time," said Smith. "Conditions are very dry in this area."

Firefighters say they haven't seen a lot of problems so far due to the very dry conditions, but they worry that with the 4th of July coming and other things happening in the area this could just be the start of a bigger problem.

"It's starting to be the time of year when people are using fireworks," said Smith. "Everybody needs to be very cautious with any kind of open flame or heat source."

That heat source could even be a combine.

The hot weather has sent farmers into their fields to begin harvesting wheat.

The straw is very dry and flammable, adding one more concern while the area awaits one good rain.

Firefighters say people should avoid open burning whenever possible, but if it is necessary you should have water or a fire extinguisher on hand.

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