Keep risk of fires to a minimum

It is well past Independence Day, but the dark evening sky still lights up after dusk, and the booming sound of illegal fireworks continues to frighten dogs and cats well into the evening.

We will remind you that illegal fireworks are just that – illegal. However, each summer many local residents decide tempting fate is worth the risk. Why break the law and indulge in such foolishness?

We value our eyesight and digits, so we don’t participate.

We would encourage you to do the same.

Yet another reason to abstain? This summer has been a particularly dry one. The risk from flaming projectiles to the wilderness and homes around you is even greater than usual. So let’s just skip the whole thing.

Other outdoor activities that may have some bad consequences include outdoor cooking and campfires. Without proper precaution, fire can escape from your fire pit and, within seconds, spread across your dry lawn. Pleas observe the following tips:

• Keep campfires small;

• Do not leave before they are extinguished;

• Clear away flammable material surrounding the fire so it cannot ignite dry vegetation;

• Be sure and douse with plenty of water, stir, and add more water until everything is wet;

• Turn over unburned pieces and wet the underside;

• Do not just cover a campfire with soil; it could smolder and remain hot for hours and then come back to life when everyone is gone.

Let’s play it safe. Keeping the risk of fire to a minimum during such a dry season is something we all can celebrate.