LOCAL NEWS

Human-caused wildfires decrease in Utah for second year

Nov 16, 2022, 1:38 PM | Updated: May 21, 2023, 4:38 pm

The Rainbow Fire near Ogden Canyon on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2022. The fire forced evacuations. (Chopper...

The Rainbow Fire near Ogden Canyon on Tuesday, Sept. 6, 2022. The fire forced evacuations. (Chopper 5)

(Chopper 5)

SALT LAKE CITY — Gov. Spencer Cox is thanking Utahns for using their fire sense after the state recorded a drop in human-caused wildfires for the second year in a row.

“Thank you for dousing campfires. Thank you for maintaining vehicles to prevent road fires, for being safe with fireworks, and for using fire safety basics. Thank you for doing your part to preserve the beauty of our great state. And thank you for using your fire sense,” he said in a video message shared Wednesday morning.

His message comes after the Utah Department of Natural Resources released data gathered from Jan. 1 to Nov. 1, which shows the decrease in human-caused wildfires for the year. In 2020, the Beehive State battled 946 wildfires. That number dropped to 548 in 2021 and 489 in 2022.

More than 87,000 acres burned in 2020, while that number decreased to just over 24,000 in 2022.

“Utahns rose to the occasion and took the challenge to use their Fire Sense this year,” said Brett Ostler, state fire management officer and statewide prevention & fire communication coordinator with the Utah Division of Forestry, Fire & State Lands. “Throughout the state, the numbers show people are changing their behaviors and using their Fire Sense. Another key factor in our success is our effective partnerships. We couldn’t have achieved this without the help of our cooperators throughout the state.”

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Human-caused wildfires decrease in Utah for second year