(KCBD) - In 2017 over 350,000 acres burned across Texas, and according to the U.S. Census Bureau, last year over 715,000 homes across the state were at high or extreme risk from wildfires.
So with Texas being the second most wildfire prone state in the nation it's important to know how to handle a wildfire before it gets out of hand.
Kevin Ivy with the Lubbock Fire Department said cigarettes being thrown out of the car or trailers scratching the road causing sparks are two of the most common fire-starters they see. Along with unattended fires or burning during windy conditions. He also advises not letting children pay with matches or lighters, and always keeping those items out of reach and harms way.
"If you can safely put it out and you have a fire extinguisher or a source of water, a large source of water, then sure, try and put it out," Ivy said. "But we want to make sure you're not going to get hurt in the process, you know? If you can safely do it, try.But leave it to us if you can't."
Ivy says there is also a specific way you should use your fire extinguisher or water to properly put out the fire.
"Whenever you're using that extinguisher, you want to make sure to aim at the base of the fire, and put that out, and sweep it back and forth," Ivy said, "which is the best way, and the same thing for the water, you want to aim at the base of the fire, the ground basically."
But he adds that the first step is always to call 911 and make sure everyone is out of harm's way.
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