Mitigating Risk...and Stupidity

Ty Kiisel

If you live in the West, you know that wildfire season has been upon us and the mountains are like a tinderbox waiting to explode (fires were burning all over the West, including an out-of-control wildfire in Colorado that caused the evacuation of 11,000 people). Over the last couple of months in Utah, there have been at least three fires started by people target shooting--causing homes to be evacuated and lots of other damage. The “Dump Fire” (as it has been called) came to within 20 feet of three homes under construction and between 20 and 50 yards of occupied homes. City officials in Saratoga Springs (where a number of colleagues and friends live) were allowed to return to their homes after a night of wondering if they would even have a home when the fire was brought under control.

High winds in Central Utah have fanned the flames of what was called the “Wood Hollow Fire” to almost 40,000 acres as of this writing. Thirty or so structures had been destroyed and 200 homes had been evacuated, with about 360 structures at risk. (As of this writing, it was reported that the fire was only 4 percent contained). To be honest, I'm not sure what the cause of the Wood Hollow Fire was, but it wasn’t lightening.

Fire danger is perilously high this summer. Riding over the Mirror Lake Highway during a weekend in June, the “No Fire” …

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