BRADFORD, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- It was Monday's weather conditions that caused a controlled fire to get out of control. But the fire should have never been started in the first place
Forest Ranger Gerry Parsons said a Bradford farmer had a permit to do some burning on his land located on Station Road on Monday, but he didn't follow the rules of the permit.
Rangers say he was supposed to wait until after 5 P.M. to start burning. He was also supposed to have some heavy excavation equipment on hand, and five other people helping him. The permit also said not to burn if windy, and first responders say wind was gusting between 8-10 MPH when they arrived to the scene around 10 A.M. After 15 minutes fighting the fire, rangers decided to call for a helicopter. Parsons said that the fire was under control as of noon with the help of seven different departments. With the weather staying dry this week, he's urging everyone to take precaution.
"Number one make sure they follow the rules of the permit. We're encouraging everyone not to burn until after five o'clock. That's when the winds die down, it's a cooler part of the day. Things will green up here in the next few weeks and it's going to be a little bit safer but right now, we've got the cured fuels left over from last winter and that's what's burning in this case, the dried fuels," said Parsons.
Rangers estimate seven acres of land was damaged by fire, but Parsons said it could have been much worse.
And Chris if this man is found guilty of not following the criteria of his permit, he could have to pay a fine of up to $25,000 to municipality and possibly more if he is charged for the cost of the helicopter.