Prescribed fire to restore prairie vegetation, near Black Earth, WI, Forestry image catalog

By Shereen Siewert

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is cautioning against any outdoor burning this weekend in Wausau and throughout the state, with fire danger at very high levels for the Easter holiday weekend.

With low humidity and high winds in the forecast, officials with the National Weather Service and DNR are paying close attention to areas most at risk.

DNR-issued burning permits for debris piles, barrels and grass or wooded areas across the DNR Protection Area are suspended as a result of the elevated fire risk. Campfires are discouraged and residents are asked to extinguish and dispose of cigarettes properly. Outdoor enthusiasts should also use caution with off-road vehicles or equipment that can spark and start a fire.

If you are outside the DNR Protection Area, please check with your local authorities for any burning restrictions.

More than 200 wildfires reported in Wisconsin have been reported so far this year, burning over 450 acres. Fire officials anticipate a slightly longer than average fire season because of how early the snow melted around the state.

The earliest chance of minimal precipitation is expected Monday. In the meantime, please continue to take extra precautions during this dry spell. Use extreme caution until the fire weather improves.

Report fires early by calling 911 immediately. Stay up-to-date by checking the fire conditions online here.