Grass fire takes out 3 acresPublished 11:05am Thursday, September 13, 2012
A grass fire burned up three acres in Fergus Falls near the County Highway 1 exit off Interstate Highway 94 on Tuesday. No one was hurt and no buildings were damaged, but Fire Chief Mark Hovland said it serves as an important reminder to be cautious during dangerous fire conditions.
Around 2:30 p.m., workers on the Tower Road bridge project were cutting a metal guard rail near the junction (currently closed) when a spark blew into the grassy area on the northeast side of the road, starting a fire that ended up spreading three acres in the triangle of land between I-94 and the bridge.
Firefighters were on scene for about an hour and a half. Though the fire was contained to the “triangle,” Hovland said it spread quickly because of the wind and could have jumped County Highway 1 if firefighters hadn’t put it down – potentially resulting in a much more damaging blaze.
“It is extremely dry and everybody needs to be a little more cautious,” he said.
Though no longer under a red flag warning like it was earlier in the week, Otter Tail County is currently under a fire weather watch from the National Weather Service, meaning that critical fire conditions are very possible in the area. The DNR lists the county’s fire danger as very high, and the county is currently under a burning restriction that bans new permits but allows campfires.