Arizona agencies working to minimize risk after unusually high fire activity

May 3, 2019, 5:55 AM
(Pexels Photo)...
(Pexels Photo)
(Pexels Photo)

PHOENIX — Arizona agencies are working to minimize risk after parts of the state northwest of the Valley saw unusually high fire activity in the past month.

The Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management responded to three fires in April near Wickenburg and Wittmann, areas that normally don’t see much fire activity.

All three were caused by human actions — debris burning, barbecuing and welding — with the largest burning through 570 acres.

“We just want to remind people not to get complacent and just be extra careful, because we are going to see that high fire activity more in the outlying rural areas,” department spokeswoman Tiffany Davila told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Thursday.

The department sent a fire behavior analyst to the scenes to evaluate the burn areas and conditions and will begin patrolling the communities this weekend.

In another effort to reduce wildfire risk, Arizona agencies are expanding the state’s Healthy Forest Initiative.

The partnership began in 2014 after the state’s largest wildfire in history, the Wallow Fire, burned through more than 538,000 acres of eastern Arizona forest.

Members include the Arizona Department of Transportation, Arizona Commerce Authority, Arizona Department of Forestry and Fire Management, Arizona Eastern Counties Organization, Salt River Project and the timber-hauling industry.

The initiative initially eased weight restrictions on highways to help timber companies remove vegetation that could fuel fires, and it is now expanding those relaxed regulations to more roads.

Beginning Jan. 1, 2020, trucks will be allowed to carry up to 91,000 pounds if they have a sixth axle added, which reduces the impact on bridges and roads.

The maximum weight on most state roads is 80,000 pounds.

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Jim Cross contributed to this report. 

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

(Cave Creek Museum Photo)...

Cave Creek Museum to construct Veterans Memory Garden

The Cave Creek Museum announced it will construct the Veterans Memory Garden to honor those who served and the unknown fallen soldiers.
1 day ago
Sidney Garrand (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)...

Man indicted on second-degree murder in road rage shooting death of 8-year-old in Phoenix

A man has been indicted on second-degree murder in the road rage shooting death of an 8-year-old girl in Phoenix last month.
1 day ago
(Facebook Photo/Daily Dose Midtown)...
Kevin Stone

Scratch Daily Dose in midtown Phoenix off your list of brunch spots

Midtown Phoenix lost a popular brunch option last week when the Daily Dose Kitchen & Bar closed its doors for good.
1 day ago
(Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)...
Associated Press

Authorities identify family members killed in rollover crash on Arizona freeway

Authorities have identified a man and two children who died in a rollover crash on an Arizona freeway that left four other family members injured last week.
1 day ago
Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Gates calls for calm among the attendees during ...
Kevin Stone

Maricopa County board chairman encourages legal challenges to election

Maricopa County Board of Supervisors Chairman Bill Gates said he welcomes legal challenges to the 2022 general election results and will abide by any court rulings.
1 day ago
(Mark Taylor Rendering)...

New luxury detached homes available for rent in west Phoenix neighborhood

The west Phoenix neighborhood of Laveen is the home for a new community of single-family detached rental units.
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Prep the plumbing in your home just in time for the holidays

With the holidays approaching, it's important to know when your home is in need of heating and plumbing updates before more guests start to come around.
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Here are 4 signs the HVAC unit needs to be replaced

Pool renovations and kitchen upgrades may seem enticing, but at the forefront of these investments arguably should be what residents use the most. In a state where summertime is sweltering, access to a functioning HVAC unit can be critical.
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Ways to prevent clogged drains and what to do if you’re too late

While there are a variety of ways to prevent clogged drains, it's equally as important to know what to do when you're already too late.
Arizona agencies working to minimize risk after unusually high fire activity