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Hunters urged to be wary of potential fire hazards due to prolonged drought conditions

A spark. That’s all it takes to ignite a wildfire. With the pheasant and rifle deer season openers rapidly approaching, hunters are reminded to act responsibly in the field and to do their part in the prevention of wildfires.

According to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln drought monitor (droughtmonitor.unl.edu/), 80% of the state is experiencing severe to exceptional drought conditions. These prolonged conditions have increased the risk of wildfires across much of the state, and the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission urges hunters to take the following precautions:

  • Restrict driving to established roads and trails.
  • Avoid parking vehicles in tall vegetation.
  • Restrict the use of campfires.
  • Dispose of cigarettes and other flammable objects appropriately.
  • Ensure your vehicle, trailers, and other equipment are well-maintained.
  • Make sure no chains are dragging from your vehicle.
  • In the morning, before driving and while the exhaust/catalytic converter system is cool, inspect it to see no debris is clinging to it.
  • Carry a fire extinguisher in the vehicle.

Driving vehicles or parking on dry, tall grass is a primary threat. Grass can ignite within seconds of contacting a hot surface, such as a vehicle’s exhaust/catalytic converter systems.

Nebraska’s pheasant, quail and partridge seasons open Oct. 29 and run through Jan. 31, 2023. The November firearm deer season runs from Nov. 12-20, 2022.

About Jerry Kane

Jerry Kane is the news manager with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission. He can be contacted at jerry.kane@nebraska.gov or 402-471-5008.

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