HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) - Horry County Fire Rescue officials want to give the community an alert about more than just the burn ban that's in effect for the county right now.
As the region heads into a season prone to fires, officials are already seeing an elevated number of a certain type of fires: buildings, and structures that are abandoned or unused. It's been so many lately, they want to warn you about it.
"Last night they had two abandoned single-wide trailer fires," HCFR Lieutenant Bryan Turner said. "And it quickly spread into the woods." Nothing much was left over from that fire in Aynor.
We are heading into what Turner calls active wildfire season, and already there are a number of calls his department has responded to.
"A lot of abandoned structures that been catching on fire and also it's spreading to the surrounding woods around it and threatening homes," Turner said.
With the burn ban in effect Tuesday, residents cannot legally start a fire to burn anything. Turner warns burning anytime could be dangerous, especially in rural areas where fires may not be noticed right away. That's where crews are seeing fires at abandoned buildings get out of control.
Turner says the fire in Aynor Monday night burned both trailers and about an acre of woods. Property owners need to be mindful of everything they own.
"Because if your property catches on fire, it does increase risk of developing, like today, especially with low humidity and high winds, it's going to spread really fast and get into other people's property and possibly a house," Turner said.
Start with making sure the best measures that can possibly be taken to protect a structure from fire, are being taken.
"We as a wild fire group here in Horry County, we try to teach people safety and stuff around their homes and property," Turner explained. "And one of the biggest things, and I preach this a lot is pine straw. If you can remove your pine straw and go with more of a mulch product, or even rocks, you're going to be in a good place."