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Balancing Drought and Wildfire Risk

drought wildfireASHLAND, Ore. — Homeowners will have to balance the risks of wildfire with the need to conserve water this summer, as the region goes through a drought.

Local fire agencies said people can take steps to reduce water use and still prevent grass from drying out. Ashland Fire recommends homeowners water the areas within 10 feet of their homes, and if weeds and dry grass are kept short, it can slow down wildfires.

Fire agencies said the region faces a long, dry, fire season ahead, and hope to get the word out to homeowners.

“We increased to high fire danger very early in the season,” said Margueritte Hickman with Ashland Fire. “And so, where were at today is, hopefully many of our citizens, if not most or all, have already taken some precautions.”

According to the Oregon Department of Forestry, mowing dry grass is now allowed between 1 p.m. and 8 p.m.