Winter season dangerous time for Texas grass fires

Winter season dangerous time for Texas grass fires

ABILENE, Texas - The winter season is an active time of year for fires in Texas.

While the cause of Tuesday's fires in south Abilene are still unknown, we did learn the next couple months are going to be dangerous.

This is because even though the soil is still moist from the recent freeze, the high winds dry out the vegetation above the soil very quickly.

"This is the time of year where we've had hard freezes," said Jimmy Hall, chief of the E.C.C.A. Volunteer Fire Department. "The vegetation is completely dead. It dries out and it creates a very heavy fuel load and that's very dangerous when we talk about grass fires," he said.

There are things you can do to make sure you don't start a fire.

"Be careful about any outdoor activity, whether that's welding, barbecue pit, things like that," Hall said. "Be very careful. Make sure you have water handy, make sure that somebody's there watching just in case it does get out of hand."

If you can move trees or vegetation away from your home or structures, that also helps.

"Make a driveable path around your fence line or your property," Hall said. "That helps the fire department get in and out and contain the wildfires a little bit better. It makes the natural fire break, so just removing those trees, brush and tall grass will help a lot."

The outdoor burn ban for Taylor County was lifted in September, but there are five counties in the Big Country currently under a ban: King, Throckmorton, Shackelford, Stephens and Brown.

The rules regarding burn bans vary from county to county.

To find out the rules for your county, you can contact your county's office or check their website for updates.

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