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Idaho Fire Incident Map

Monday, July 16, 2018

Highway 33 Fire near Howe caused by boat trailer

For Immediate Release: July 16, 2018 2 p.m.
Contact: Kelsey Griffee,, 208-521-8709

Highway 33 Fire caused by boat trailer
Twitter: @BLMIdahoFire
(#Hwy33Fire, #BLMIFDFire)

HOWE, IdahoThe Highway 33 Fire started July 12, 2018 at approximately 9:30 a.m. burning a total of 77 acres on BLM and INL lands. Nineteen small fires sparked along Highway 33, milepost 2 to milepost 11, from a boat trailer’s wheel dragging.

“As you pack up to travel, take a few moments to reduce the chance of igniting sparks along the way,” said Fire Management Officer Joel Gosswiller “by inspecting your vehicle and trailer for dragging metal and performing regular maintenance.”

Prevent vehicle-caused wildfires by following these safety tips:

1.      Ensure all parts of your vehicle are secure and not dragging. A loose safety chain or muffler striking a rock or pavement will send a shower of sparks into dry vegetation.

2.      Take the time to check your tire pressure and look for indicators of wear and tear on a tire. 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.

3.      Take the time to maintain and clean exhaust systems and spark arresters. Engine compartments can collect debris and ignite a spark. Worn out catalytic converters can degrade and cast off hot pieces of material. A faulty spark arrestor can shed hot metal.

4.      Equip your vehicle with spark arresters. Avoid driving your vehicle off-road when it's hot and dry because that will increase your chances of starting a fire. If you drive an off-road vehicle, such as an ATV/UTV, particles can fly out through the exhaust system.

5.      Oil and transmission fluid are highly flammable. If you notice your vehicle leaking, it’s time for a maintenance check.

The BLM wants to remind you to have a fire extinguisher with you and know how to use it. Grass burns at an accelerated rate and is dangerous to firefighters and the public. If you accidentally ignite the grass on fire, call 911!