Smoke hovered in the sky over Geary County Monday evening. It marked the first time farm producers were burning grassland in large numbers.
Junction City police dispatch confirmed there were a number of controlled burns. Rural Fire Chief Garry Berges indicated there was one controlled burn that got out of control, but it was minor.
Geary County Extension Agent Chuck Otte expected the burning to continue until windier conditions arrive on Tuesday. “We’ve had a lot of wind, we’ve had precipitation, not a lot but enough to inhibit burning. Today the temperatures warmed up, the sun came out, the wind dropped so that meant we had good conditions to burn. ”
Once darkness began to arrive there was an inversion layer which was caused by cold air aloft that pressed the smoke to the ground. Until wind and sunshine arrive the smoke will remain.
It makes for difficult conditions for some who have respiratory conditions. Otte noted it’s tough. He advised staying in the house and using oxygen if you have it. “It’s tough. I feel badly for them but it’s part of the season. This is probably the only day we’re going to have this.” Farm producers burn the grass to control the growth of cedar trees and excess grass on the ground.
Otte confirmed here has been less burning this spring than in past years.