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Just enough water for fire potential | Preston Citizen

Just enough water for fire potential

March 16, 2014
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By ROBERT S. MERRILL 

Assistant editor

The snow has melted on the valley floor and little of the white stuff remains in the foothills around Franklin County.

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Even though the area has had significant moisture during the past six weeks, there is a looming potential for fire danger later this summer and autumn unless significant moisture continues to fall during the next several weeks.

“We could be in for some fire problems, especially in the foothills this summer,” said Franklin County Fire Marshal Scott Martin. “We’ve had a fair amount of snow on the valley floor this winter. And the past few weeks we’ve also had some in the foothills and mountains surrounding Franklin County,” he said.

On March 6 the Bear River Basin automated snotel locations showed 106 percent of long-term averages for snow-water content since the new water year started last Oct. 1. One year ago the figures stood at 76 percent.

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Martin said last summer was extremely dry in both the valley and the foothills and it will take a lot of water to recharge the soil-moisture profile.

“One concern we have is this recent moisture could spur the growth of grasses and brush this spring and early summer. That undergrowth could turn tinder-dry across the foothills and mountains,” warned Martin.

This story is sponsored by The Preston Citizen Bookstore and Aspire Credit.

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