That’s obvious to anyone who has spent any time outdoors recently, especially those who have been on tractors plowing up shriveled fields or shredding brush and high grass.
The weather appears to be even been more oppressive since Hurricane Isaac made landfall in Louisiana last week and its remnants moved slowly north and then east across the U.S., carrying all the badly needed moisture with it.
Firefighters throughout the area have been busy battling grass fires in north Bee, Karnes and Refugio counties.
As a result, officials in two bordering counties have enacted burn bans in the last week.
The Commissioners Court of Karnes County reinstated an emergency burn ban on Aug. 31, due to dry conditions and the potential for serious grass and brush fires. All outdoor burning is prohibited or restricted.
“We had numerous fires break out yesterday (Aug. 30),” County Judge Barbara Shaw explained. “With those fires, we had people without electricity up until 9:30 and 10 o’clock last night from lines burned...”
Goliad County commissioners instituted a 90-day burn ban effective immediately during Monday’s meeting. Also, Refugio County remains under a burn ban.
David Morgan, emergency management coordinator for Bee County, said that he expects the burn ban to be on next week’s Commissioners Court agenda.
“The problem we have right now is because we had some recent rains that were pretty substantial, we have some high grass that is now turning brown and becoming more of a fire hazard,” Morgan said. “We certainly recommend they don’t do any brush burning, but right now it is still legal for them to do that.”
Until the first wet cool fronts arrive or a tropical storm wades ashore closer to the Coastal Bend with drenching cloudbursts, residents should be extra cautious with anything that could cause a spark or flame.
It would not take much to create a raging inferno with disastrous consequences.