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Big Oregon wildfires rack up bills in the millions

Published On: Mar 09 2013 12:46:43 AM CST

NewsChannel 21's John Hendricks shows us why now is the time to start preparing for wildfires

BEND, Ore. -

A new report issued by the National Interagency Coordination Center in Boise shows large wildfires across the U.S. racked up a bill of nearly $580 million last year.

The same report shows Oregon had the two largest, by acreage, wildfires in the U.S. It was fires like the Long Draw and Holloway blazes that ran up a hefty bill in Oregon.

With warmer temperatures on the way, many Central Oregonians will be headed out to do yard work. Fire prevention leaders on the High Desert say now is the time to start preparing for wildfire season.

"We encourage people this time of year to think about that defensible space, that 30 to 100 feet around your home," Katie Lighthall, program director for Project Wildfire, said Friday.

She says clearing debris like pine needles and brush, and trimming up trees will not only help you, but will cut down on the cost of fighting the fire.

"If we do more around our homes to keep firefighters safer, that's less that they have to worry about, putting firefighters and fire engines and all those resources around our home," Lighthall said.

For more information on Project Wildfire Click Here

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