Robert B. Lay, Fire Chief
Public Safety Building
181 Main St
Groveland, MA 01834
For Immediate Release
Thursday, Aug. 11, 2016
Contact: John Guilfoil
Email: [email protected]
Groveland Fire Department Warns of Brush Fire Dangers After Fighting Two in Past Week
GROVELAND – Chief Robert Lay and the Groveland Fire Department would like to warn residents of the current high risk of brush fires after putting out two in town over the last week.
On Monday, Aug. 8, Groveland Fire responded to a brush fire between Center Street and Pheasant Lane. Upon arrival, firefighters found flames up to 30 feet high in a heavily wooded area. Extremely dry conditions, wind, and stacks of building materials contributed to the heavy fire load, which the fire department quickly contained.
Mutual aid was provided on scene by the Georgetown Fire Department, while the West Newbury and Boxford Fire Departments provided station coverage. Two State Forest Fire units were also on scene to assist.
Just days before, firefighters responded to Bare Hill Road for a brush fire that initially sparked the night of Friday, Aug. 5 and lasted through Sunday morning. This stretch of land is remote and difficult to access, which attributed to the extended time taken to control and extinguish the fire. Groveland Fire received mutual aid from the West Newbury Fire Department, with additional help from the State Forest Fire unit.
The cause of both of these fires remains under investigation.
“Although the area received rain today, temperatures will soon return to the 90’s for the next week,” Chief Lay said. “Residents should be aware that there is a high risk of brush fires right now, and should secure materials on their property accordingly.”
Due to the increasingly warm weather, vegetation has been extremely dry, increasing the danger of brush fires. Chief Lay recommends the following safety tips to prevent brush, grass, and forest fires from the National Fire Protection Association:
- Place cigarette butts in metal containers, do not throw them on the ground or into vegetation.
- Leave fireworks to the professionals, do not use consumer fireworks.
- Reduce the risk of sparks by making sure nothing is dragging from your vehicle, keeping tires properly inflated, and use care when operating lawn mowers or other equipment.
- Don’t let a target shooting hobby start a wildfire. Avoid steel bullets outside as they can spark if they hit rocks or other hard objects. Observe all laws and restrictions about where, when, and what to shoot.
- Be aware of and comply with any local ordinances or permit requirements pertaining to outdoor or open air burning. This includes campfires, brush fires, fire pits, chimineas, and outdoor fireplaces.
- Closely attend all outdoor fires and be sure to put out the fire completely before leaving.
- Avoid burning on windy, dry days.
- Do not use gasoline or other flammable or combustible liquids to burn brush, trash, or other waste.