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Officials predict average wildfire season in Nevada despite wet winter

Nevada Wildfire Power Lines
AP Photo/Lance Iversen, File
In this Nov. 17, 2020, file photo, wooden steps burn after wildfires destroyed several homes in Reno, Nev.

Firefighting officials in Nevada are predicting an average wildfire season despite a particularly wet winter. Officials presented the forecast at the governor's annual wildfire briefing on Tuesday.

Some parts of Nevada got twice as much precipitation this winter as an average year.

That means it's likely to be a much more traditional fire season, with blazes possibly beginning in July or even as late as August.

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While there is still concern that a blaze could spark in the forests, Kacey KC, the state fire warden, said it's the basins that are under a greater threat.

"Much more concern in the rangeland and the lower elevations because they will dry out. They'll have the grass growth and the inner spaces and that's where the fires will have more potential to run."

Local, state and federal fire officials in Nevada operate with the understanding that every agency will do its best to respond to fires despite jurisdictional concerns.

According to state data, wildfires burn more than 440,000 acres in Nevada annually. More than 60% of those fires are human-caused.

Paul serves as KNPR's producer and reporter in Northern Nevada. Based in Reno, Paul specializes in covering state government and the legislature.