DNR: Rash of brush fires reported around Michigan

Risk of brush fires amid dry conditions

ALPENA, Mich. – A dry winter and recent sunny skies have led to a rash of recent brush fires around the state, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources says.

Since Friday, the agency has responded to at least 40 such fires in the state, said Don Klingler, DNR resource protection manager for the Lower Peninsula.

A fast-moving grass fire Monday burned 86 acres in northeast Michigan's Alcona County, The Alpena News reported.

Roger MacNeill, a forest fire officer at the Lincoln DNR office, said the fire jumped a drainage ditch and the Black River.

"When you have 20-foot flame lengths and debris flying in the air, it just flies over the river and lands on the ground and starts it on fire,” MacNeill said.

Grass fires have been rampant in Michigan this spring, with about 20 burning at once on Monday, including one that burned 600 acres in Manistee, MacNeill said.