BEMIDJI-Wildfire season took off in the Bemidji area Saturday; the fire department responded to three blazes, and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources listed Monday's fire danger as "high."
According to the Bemidji Fire Department's Facebook page, one of Saturday's three fires "heavily damaged" a garage. The department issued a fire watch for Sunday, warning against open burning due to high winds and low humidity. The Minnesota Incident Command System, which tracks all fire activity in the state, issued a Red Flag Warning for northwest Minnesota on Sunday, as well, because of the favorable fire conditions.
The MICS also said grass fires were reported in Warroad, Park Rapids, Deer River, Little Falls and the Sandstone/Cambridge areas over the weekend.
Two additional grass fires were reported in Bemidji on Monday, with one causing minor damage to the exterior of a commercial building.
The DNR's fire danger scale runs from "low" to "extreme." Most of Beltrami County was classified as "high" Monday, meaning fires can start very easily and spread rapidly. The northwest corner of the county was in "moderate" danger of wildfire, meaning fires can still start easily but spread at a moderate rate.
Burning permits were required in all of Minnesota on Monday, according to the DNR website.