Wildfire Awareness Week kicks off

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By Tami Hoey By Tami Hoey

PHOENIX -- Wildfire season is right around the corner, and we are coming off a very dry winter. Already, some wildfires have sparked in the Flagstaff area. So the National Weather Service, in partnership with local, county, and state officials, is sponsoring Arizona Wildfire Awareness Week this week. The goal is to educate the public and raise awareness about the dangers of wildfires.

"Just keep in mind it's a very critical fire season," says Valerie Meyers from the National Weather Service. "We had a very dry winter. We don't have a lot of precipitation in the forecast, at least for the next couple of weeks. It's still a very dry pattern, a windy pattern."

The message? Be careful out there with fire. "Create a defensible space around your home, especially if you live outside the urban areas," advises Valerie. "Don't have bushes up against your house."

Fire crews are working right now to contain a wildfire on Mount Elden northeast of Flagstaff, according to Coconino National Forest spokeswoman Heather Noel. The Boulder Fire was reported at 1:30 p.m. Sunday. It is estimated at 1.5 acres with zero percent containment. Smoke is visible from Flagstaff.

And a wildfire southwest of Flagstaff was 70 percent contained Monday morning, according to Noel. The Secret Fire was reported at 9 a.m. Saturday. It is located near Secret Mountain in the Secret Mountain Wilderness area approximately 20 miles southwest of Flagstaff.

Fore more information on wildfire prevention, visit the website: http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/psr/DSS/fire.php