What a difference Mother Nature can make in a week.
On May 3, DNR tankers were making water drops on fast-moving wildfires that threatened parts of Baxter. Firefighters from Brainerd, the DNR, Crosby, Deerwood, Ironton, Mission, Nisswa and Pillager responded to fires that resulted when gusting winds made the tinder-dry forests a nightmare for those who realize the destructive potential of fire.
A week later, burning restrictions in many central Minnesota counties have now been lifted. A nice 2-inch soaking on Sunday night, followed by an additional rain on Wednesday turned a dangerous situation into a manageable one.
Now that the grass has had a chance to green up a little we might have seen the worse of this spring's fire danger.
Credit should go to the first-rate cooperation among the DNR, area firefighters and area residents who obeyed the fire restrictions. As Wednesday's serious blazes demonstrated, this area could have seen a lot more damage had fire officials not been so well prepared.
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