The Streator fire department didn’t see any fires created by dry and windy conditions on Monday, despite a red flag warning issued for the area.
Streator Fire Lt. Bryan Park said that’s just the result they were looking for, and to ensure another day ends the same way they will continue their burning ban through Tuesday, May 1.
The National Weather Service in Chicago issued a red flag warning Monday, which is issued when a combination of strong winds, low relative humidity, dry fuels and warm temperatures provide dangerous conditions for fire.
Park said such warnings are not common and the department wanted to do all that it could to diminish the chance of a fire.
“We take them pretty seriously when they do put them out as they are the experts in the field,” Park said.
Park said Fire Chief Gary Bird made the decision because conditions have been dry lately and it’s generally recommended residents not burn on days when winds are more than 10 mph since a fire could blow out of control quickly.
Park said conditions will be mostly the same Tuesday as they were on Monday, which led to an extension of the burning ban.
Ottawa Fire Chief Steve Haywood said the city saw a similarly quiet day.
“We haven’t seen anything,” Haywood said. “But with us, we don’t cover as many areas with thick brush.”
Haywood said the city allowed recreational fires but said it’s not recommended when conditions are especially dry or windy.
Park also said rural communities are more likely to be active on dry and windy days.
Grand Ridge Fire Department responded to a minor brush fire at Pine Hills Golf Course on Monday, but a worker at the business said it didn’t spread and was extinguished quickly.
Park is hopeful the department will see another quiet day.
“We were fine today, which is the reason we’re going with a burn day tomorrow,” Park said Monday.