Start Your Engines, But Don't Start a Fire

We've had less than one inch of rain since October, and that has the Potter County Fire Marshall extremely concerned for this weekend's sand drag events.

Potter County is under an emergency burn ban due to the severe dry conditions, and Chief Lake says even an exhaust pipe could spark a blaze this weekend if you're not careful. The Sand Drags are held every year at the Canadian River, but this year, because of those dry conditions, the laws have changed on what you can and cannot burn.

"We're allowing them to have a BBQ grill or a small item like a chiminea. Something that can contain a fire with no open flame." The list of what you cannot do is quite a bit longer. "Burn barrels, no. Campfires, no. Pits, no. Piling wood up on the ground and burning it, absolutely not. There's no open flame allowed."

The fire department will have several fire trucks on location, ready to go, should anything happen. Several areas have already been blocked off, making space for fire trucks to get through if there is an emergency. There will be six agencies patrolling the Canadian River this weekend, with a total of between 20 and thirty officials on duty at an given time. Close to thirty thousand people are expected to attend this weekend's events.