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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Dry Grass Ripe for Fire - Motorized Vehicles Beware!!

As you cruise down the highway enjoying the beauty of Idaho’s scenery, be mindful of the burned areas along the roadway. Vehicle caused wildfires have significantly altered the aesthesis of our tranquil terrain.  
 
Pulling off the side of the road into tall dry grass can ignite the vegetation on fire. The exterior of your exhaust system can reach temperatures up to 2,800 degrees Fahrenheit. With the right weather conditions, all forms of motorized vehicles including cars, pickups, motorcycles, and all terrain vehicles (ATVs) can be fire starters.
Tips to Reduce Vehicle Wildfires 
  1. A loose safety chain or muffler striking a rock or pavement will send a shower of sparks into dry vegetation. Ensure all parts of your vehicle are secure and not dragging.
  1. Driving on an exposed wheel rim throws sparks. Poorly lubricated wheel bearings can overheat and ignite, and worn out brakes can drop hot material into the grass. Take the time to check your tire pressure and look for indicators of wear and tear on tire.
  1. Engine compartments can collect debris and ignite a spark. Worn-out catalytic converters can degrade and cast off extremely hot pieces of material. A faulty spark arrestor can shed hot metal. Take the time to maintain and clean exhaust systems and spark arresters.
  1. Avoid dry grass.
  1. Report all fires immediately. Keep a cell phone, water, a shovel and a fire extinguisher with you in the event a fire starts.
We can all make a difference in reducing human-caused fires during this season.