High Winds Are a Big Concern For The Big Spring Fire Department

By Sylvia Gonzalez
NewsWest 9

BIG SPRING  - In the last couple of months, the Big Spring Fire Department has been trying to figure out what is causing abandoned structures to go up in flames in the northwest part of town.

The last suspicious fire that the fire department saw was last week, but according to Fire Marshall  Carl Condray, fires have been mysteriously started in the same area for last couple of years. With the high winds and lack of rain, it's a formula for a fire to break out at any moment.

"There is a greater concern this time of year, the fuel seems more readily combustible and available to burn," Condray said.

Condray is referring to the high winds and the greater chance of a fire. He says the risks of a fire happening during the windy weather are much higher.

"The humidity is a lot lower, it's dryer, the grass and vegetation is dead now so you have a ready fuel source. Then as we are seeing today (Tuesday) and during this week with the high winds and the moisture, the fire index goes up a greater risk of fire," Condray said.

He says if a fire breaks out during these high winds, it's much more difficult for them to battle the blaze.

"Much more difficult for the firefighters as well for law enforcement, the increase of danger of a fire spreading. There's so many factors, the smoke when it starts blowing across the roadways makes it difficult for emergency responders and for the drivers down the road," Condray said.

Condray says in the last couple of years, there have been several fires in the northwest part of town. The most recent one happened last week which burned an abandoned structure.

Although they don't know how the fires started, he does say what could be some contributing factors.

"There's also a tremendous overgrowth of grass and weeds in that area, a lot of vacant lots and some abandoned structures," Condray said.

Condray said property owners should take more responsibility of their property and keep up with the maintenance of it, by mowing down the lots which are filled with weeds and clearing out abandoned buildings.