SE Wisconsin cities, towns issuing burning bans due to fire concerns
Jesse Ritka reports Video by tmj4.comvideo
DOUSMAN - Like most of us, Vicki Burnett is struggling to keep her thirsty lawn and garden from completely drying up.
Burnett tells TODAY'S TMJ4's Jesse Ritka she's waters her plants at least twice a day and tries to keep her yard as green as possible but it's quite the task, "Dragging the hose around, watering every square inch that I can."
Most locations in southeast Wisconsin haven't even seen an inch of rain all month, leaving parched yards thirsty for rain that won't come. Even watering is almost pointless Burnett says, "Dries up just about as soon as you water it."
Southeast Wisconsin is not experiencing drought conditions yet, but the landscape is becoming dangerously dry. So communities are taking measures to prevent fires says Dousman Fire Chief Steve Totzke, "Unfortunately we've had really dry conditions so have to put some limits on what we are allowed to do and everybody has to use responsibility."
The city of Franklin, Germantown, Menomonee Falls and Oconomowoc have all issued burn bans until further notice. And for some, that includes campfires as well as charcoal grills.
"Every community has different ordinances but open fires usually for cooking mean just that, like an open type grill. Keep some kind of tools nearby or hose near by, even though there may not be a burning ban, you're able to extinguish it," Totzke advises.
And even though Dousman doesn't have a burning ban yet, Vicki Burnett isn't taking chances when firing up her grill. "I just grill in the driveway here, hopefully... I could never stop grilling," Burnett says.
But if the dry conditions don't end soon, one of Wisconsin's greatest past times may come to an end for more of us in southeast Wisconsin.