Fires kept to a minimum this holiday
July 6, 2018
CLOVIS — Eastern New Mexico can pat itself on the back for exercising enough control this Independence Day to keep any unplanned firework blazes to a minimum.
“All I know that they went through (Wednesday) night were two incidents in (Roosevelt) county that were little bitty fires that didn’t amount to probably much of anything, but they were probably caused by fireworks,” said Portales Fire Marshal Mike Inge. “Then we had two dumpster (fires) early in the morning, and no telling if they were related to fireworks or just related to mischief. That’s all we had fire-related in the city.”
Additionally, Inge said his office’s firefighters were not called on to provide any mutual aid support for the rural fire departments they work with, such as Elida and Dora. The two incidents in Roosevelt County occurred around the same time as the city’s July 4 evening fireworks display, put on in concert with firefighters.
A number of local communities put a temporary ban on certain fireworks in time for the holiday proceedings, with most also holding an evening display. In addition to those mentioned by Inge in Floyd, Elida and Portales, the village of Melrose and the city of Clovis also held events.
Clovis Fire Battalion Chief Dale Hand said the station addressed “some hit and miss little spot fires, nothing major,” during the holiday, most of which occurred between noon and midnight July 4. He couldn’t say for sure if they were related to fireworks, but noted the minor events were fairly standard for the holiday any given year.
Beyond that, firefighters were “just praying for rain,” same as many others on the High Plains this summer, Hand added.