Utah’s Wildfire season: Why the 2020 season is off to a dangerous start

Utah Wildfires

Utah sees significantly higher wildfire starts compared to recent years past

SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4 News) – Wildfire season is here and making a severe impact across portions of the state. According to Utah Forestry Fire and State Lands, fire crews have been busier than normal for this time of year. So far Utah has has 468 wildfire starts (as of June 24) which officials say is a significantly high number compared to the 135 wildfire starts by this time in 2019. The number also topples the 360 starts by late June of 2018, a year where Utah experienced a very active wildfire season.

47 new wildfires were reported just in the past week (June 16 – June 23)

What’s alarming is about 86% of Utah’s wildfire starts so far have been human-caused, according to Utah FFSL.

In the coming days, portions of Utah could experience significant fire potential due to the combination of dry thunderstorms and dry vegetation. However, there are currently no red flag warnings.

Southern Utah could see high fire intensity, this is also known as Energy Release Component’s (ERC) it refers to just how hot a fire can get in a specific area.

Fire officials warn that vehicles can easily spark a wildfire. It’s important that when pulling a trailer to ensure chains are crossed properly while pulling a trailer – as a dragging chain has the potential to start a fire.

Also, avoid parking on tall dry grass, the hot undercarriage on the vehicle could spark a wildfire

SparkChange.Utah.gov has valuable tips on how the public can prevent human-caused wildfires.

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