WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – With the conditions outside, we’ve been hearing of brush fires popping up all over the area.

Wednesday was a warm, windy, and dry day… the perfect conditions for flying a kite but unfortunately it’s also perfect for brush fires.

“When we see days come up like this where it’s super dry and the winds are gonna go 30 miles per hour or more that’s one of the criteria, the second criteria that relative humidity number very important,” said Dave Celino, the State Fire Supervisor for Massachusetts.

There have been more than 260 wildfires in Massachusetts since January 1st. More than 80 of them have been in the past seven days. This rate of fires comes as no surprise, as here in Massachusetts we’ve met the National Weather Service criteria for a Red Flag Warning, making for a busier than normal week for the West Springfield Fire Departments and other Fire Departments.

“Over the last few days, there’s been around four to five brush fires in West Springfield or around West Springfield. We worked with Springfield fire on one over off of I-91 the other night and we had our own right here at the train tracks,” said West Springfield Fire Department Lieutenant Tony Spear.

Springfield Fire Captain Drew Piemonte told 22News that a car caught on fire near Armory Street and I-291 Wednesday afternoon, as well as a brush fire on the railroad tracks in the same area.

22News is working for you with some ways to prevent these fires:

  • Never throw cigarettes or matches out of a vehicle
  • Never leave an outdoor fire unattended
  • Do not drive your vehicle in dry tall grass
  • Be aware of the conditions

Not only are fires more prone to get started, once the flames do start going, the real worry is that it can grow rapidly and get out of hand fast.

“The wind in that case, once the fire has ignited and the combustibles get going, it’s the equivalent of you blowing a little air under your campfire trying to give it that oxygen to continue it on,” said Spear.