PALMER, Mass. (WWLP) - April and May were rough months for brush fires in western Massachusetts. After some rain in June, our problems could be coming back.
The month of July has started out very dry. Less than half an inch of rain has fallen so far this month, a normal month of rain gets almost 4 inches.
While we've not seen much rain, we HAVE been humid. That has helped keep our brush fire danger low.
"Humidity is a big factor when it comes to fires and how quickly they spread. Reduced humidity, while it's more comfortable for the rest of us walking around, increases the rate at which fire will spread," said Alan Sirois, Chief of the Agawam Fire Department.
Now that the humidity has dropped, some brush fires have been popping up again.
There can be many causes for brush fires. On Tuesday, near Route 32 in Palmer, a passing train sent some hot carbon material onto the sides of the train tracks. That hot carbon sparked a number of brush fires.
Improperly disposed cigarettes, arson or pure accidents are some other causes for brush fires. The amount of extra debris from last year's bad weather has increased the fuel available for brush fires.
"Obviously it can destroy a lot of habitat for wild animals and we can take some concern if we live in forested areas," said Ezra Kaim of Longmeadow.
With more dry weather expected this week , brush fires could become an increasing concern.