By Shereen Siewert

With low humidity, breezy conditions and warmer temperatures in the forecast, the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources is cautioning residents in Wausau and statewide of a high risk of wildfires heading into the weekend.

Burning debris is the leading cause of Wisconsin’s wildfires. Fires caused by careless burning become more frequent this time of year, DNR officials said. 

The DNR has responded to 442 wildfires burning 1,600 acres so far this season, plus many more suppressed by local fire departments and federal partners. 

Fire officials urge extra careful with any outdoor flames, campfires, ash disposal or equipment use. Put off burning your debris pile until the vegetation “greens up.” Residents should check any recent debris burns for smoldering embers, as breezy conditions can cause fires to rekindle. 

When conditions allow, keep all fires safe and clean:

  • Always consider alternatives to burning
  • Obtain proper burn permits and check the daily burn restrictions
  • Never burn garbage such as plastics, rubber, metal or anything that is treated with chemicals

Click here to check daily fire danger, wildfire reports and burning restrictions.