#Westport Connecticut–Even with all the rain we received over the last few days the Westport Fire Department responded to a wood shingled roof fire that started from a discarded cigarette. The fire was quickly extinguished and the damage was limited to a few roof shingles, but this could have been a disaster for the homeowner if it had not been quickly spotted. The Fire Department would like to remind everyone to use care when discarding any smoking material. The Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has set the forest fire danger at “moderate” but this will quickly worsen given the forecast for this week. After the snow melts in the Northeast we enter into a traditional spring wild fire season. This is the time of the year when deciduous trees are bare and the warm spring sun heats up the forest fuels. Forest fuels are made up of anything that burns; typically grasses, leaves, twigs, branches and decaying material in the soil. If we receive rain and if the sun comes out and a breeze picks up, the fine fuels can be available for burning within an hour. With this in mind, we would remind everyone to please completely extinguish any discarded smoking material, carefully dispose of any hot charcoal only in a metal can with a tight cover, and obey the local ordinance with regards to open burning. As Smokey Bear says, “only you can prevent wild fires”.
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