South Carolina Firefighters Cautious After State Issues Red Flag Alert

Firefighters across the state admit they are worried because conditions outside are becoming more dangerous.

High winds and dry weather have forced the state to issue a red flag fire alert. A red flag alert is a wildfire danger warning issued by the South Carolina Forestry Commission.

Fire officials said the alert is not limited to the Upstate area; rather, it's in effect for every county in the state.

"A fire can happen anywhere when people don't realize that grass, woods or trees are a potential fire danger," said Mark Dill, of the Piedmont Park Fire Department.

Although meteorologists are predicting rain in the immediate forecast, fire officials said residents should still be concerned about flare-ups.

"What happens is the high winds will evaporate as well as the moisture that we do receive," said Dill. "So, just because it's a sunny day and we had rain yesterday doesn't mean that it is safe to burn."

Dill said the rain helps things grow only to have them dry up again. The rain also brings a false sense of security that could lead to another massive fire, according to Dill.

Dills said the red flag alert does not prohibit outdoor burning, but it does urge people to be careful.

Fire officials said before burning anything outdoors, residents need to check with their counties to find out about current burn restrictions.

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