PHOENIX - So far, Arizona has seen an active fire season, with over 300 wildfires that have broken out across the state since the start of 2021, burning over 14,000 acres.
One of the latest fires to break out happened on April 22, when a brush fire started in a dry river bed near Estrella Parkway and Vineyard Avenue. Goodyear police arrested 18-year-old William Paci for reckless burning, which is a misdemeanor. Court documents show he was camping in the area, and accidentally started the fire with a cigarette.
The active fire season is causing concern, as the state heads into the hot summer months.
"May and June tend to be the peak of our wildfire season within Arizona, just ahead of our monsoons, so we are always looking to prepare, as we always have that concern," said Bureau of Land Management spokesperson Dolores Garcia.
Many wildland agencies have started to hire their seasonal employees.
"Our staffing is higher as we see those Red Flag Warnings come across," said Garcia. "We also extend the amount of time they're in service, so instead of your typical 8 to 5, because these winds, we have been going longer during the day. We have firefighters on duty ready to respond."
A fire ban in Maricopa County and Phoenix parks will go into effect on May 1.
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