Weather Forecast


Firefighters, DNR fight grass fire east of Detroit Lakes

Detroit Lakes firefighters responded to a large grass fire Tuesday caused by a pile of cardboard boxes and high winds.

The call came around 4:30 p.m. reporting there was an "out of control" grass fire on the north side of Highway 34, about 5 miles east of Detroit Lakes.

Fire Chief Jeff Swanson said a resident who burned a pile of cardboard boxes "stepped away for a little bit, then when he got out it, it was spread through the woods."

About 15 acres were burned as a result. Firefighters were battling the blaze for about 1 1/2 hours, while Department of Natural Resources officers assisted.

DNR Area Forestry Supervisor Marty Wiley said enforcement actions will be taken against the resident, declining to elaborate.

"Any time a fire escapes it's a violation of statutes," he said.

The residence where the fire started sustained no property damage, Swanson said, but adding it's illegal to perform a controlled burn before 6 p.m. when the humidity levels are still low.

Wiley advises residents to abide by the rules and avoid windy weather.

"It is very dry out there after the last two weeks of nice, sunny warm weather," he said. "Folks should make sure that they get a permit before they do any burning."

There should be a five-foot clear area around the burn site to avoid the chances of it getting out of control, he added.