One mistake could cause a disaster

Memorial Day weekend will bring many people visiting and traveling through the foothill and mountain areas to take advantage of the long weekend and to enjoy the outdoors.

With the increase of visitors to Eastern Madera County this weekend, comes an increase in the chance of dangerous wildfires, as 90% of all fires in the state are human caused.

Cal Fire officials are urging residents and visitors to the foothill and Mountain Area this weekend and all summer long to be aware of the extremely dry vegetation and many dead trees throughout the area.

“The continuing drought conditions have created a potentially volatile situation,” Cal Fire Madera-Mariposa-Merced Unit Chief Nancy Koerperich said. “Wild grasses can ignite quickly and spread rapidly with the slightest wind. Although we never know what a fire season may bring, the potential for a devastating wildfire in California is tremendous. One mistake can spell disaster.”

In addition to the dry vegetation, U.S Forest Service officials are urging people to be cautious of the potential danger of dead trees falling without warning - thousands of trees in the area have been killed by the bark beetle infestation.

Officials warn people to avoid dense patches of dead trees, pitch tents and park vehicles away from dead trees, get to a clearing away from dead trees if a strong wind picks-up.

Cal Fire and U.S. Forest Service