Extreme drought conditions have expanded rapidly

[anvplayer video=”5190739″ station=”998128″]

(ABC 6 News) – Extreme drought conditions have expanded over 32 percent from what they were last week according to the National Weather Service.

As we head into the Labor Day weekend, there are some things we should all be mindful of.

With conditions as dry as they are right now – everyone needs to take precautions.

Especially during the last weekend of summer.

This is the driest summer we’ve had in nearly 50 years.

“We know it’s a holiday weekend, people might be looking at burning some brush piles or just getting out and about and doing things,” Minnesota DNR region fire specialist Jacob Froyum said.

Drought conditions have expanded from 23.9% of its coverage area, to 56.6% in just the past week.

National Weather Service La Crosse

With high winds and potentially record-breaking temperatures this weekend, the conditions are prime for brush fires which can spread fast.

“It’s always a good idea if you’re having a campfire, recreational fire to call it in to whatever jurisdiction you’re in to the dispatch center so the fire department is aware that there is a fire,” Rochester Fire Department Captain Benjamin Davis said.

If you have a fire, don’t leave it unattended.

The Minnesota DNR monitors fire dangers and burn restrictions statewide.

Their website shows where fire conditions are most favorable.

“It hasn’t been where we’re being overwhelmed by fires across the southeast and the southwest, it’s only been a couple fires as well,” Froyum said.

So if you plan to be out this Labor Day weekend, whether to relax by a campfire or do some yard work, be smart about it and if you get into trouble, call 911.

“Our brush trucks are always ready, we’re always ready to go for any situation,” Davis said.