Earlier this year the Taylor County Commissioners Court issued a "Burn Ban" throughout the county and it's still in play today. However, a few days ago the Taylor County Commissioners Court upped the game.

The latest update is that there will be no sale of, and no firing of any aerial fireworks in Taylor County until further notice. The reason is that we in Abilene and throughout West Texas have had an extremely hot and record-setting dry summer, fall and now going into the winter season.

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The County Commissioners Say No Aerial Fireworks Allowed In Taylor County

So if you were planning to set off aerial fireworks this Christmas or New Year's Eve, you'll have to save it for another safer time. As a matter of fact, County Judge Bolls has asked that those specific fireworks not be fired off even on ANY private county property.

Photo by: Rudy Fernandez of Taylor County Order
Photo by: Rudy Fernandez of Taylor County Order

The recent wildfires last week just west of Dyess Airforce Base that caused the evacuation of many homes should be an eye-opening experience to everyone as to how dry and dangerous the situation really is.

Here's what's making it MORE dangerous this year. The fact, that the recent snowpocalypse storm killed plants, shrubs, and trees, and they're all dried up making it a super-fuel for wildfires. Add in the high winds that have been haunting us this past week and we have a dangerous situation.

I have included a list of "How To Avoid Wildfires" due to the elevated wildfire weather that has been forecasted for much of West Texas.

  1. Never leave a fire unattended, make sure you completely extinguish all fires when you’re done. Completely drench the fire with water and stir the ashes until cold.
  2. Be extra safe when using oil-fuel lanterns, heaters, and stoves. Any lighting and or heating devices should be cooled to the touch before refueling them. Keep all flammable liquids and fuels a safe distance away from appliances and open flames.
  3. Never discard cigarettes, matches, or smoking materials from a  moving vehicle, or anywhere on park grounds. Completely extinguish cigarettes and then dispose of them in an appropriate ashtray or trash receptacle.
  4. No "open burning" of trash and or yard waste, follow all local laws and ordinances. Avoid burning on windy days, and keep water and fire extinguishers nearby to keep all fires in check.
  5. If you see a wildfire and haven’t received an evacuation notice, call 911 immediately. Do not assume that someone else has already called the authorities.
  6. If you find yourself in the path of a wildfire, evacuate immediately. Listen to local emergency notifications for updates. Best of all, make your own wildfire plan for you and your family before a fire ever occurs.
    Source: Texas Co-Op Power Central Texas EC

We must all do our part in keeping our piece of Texas safe, by practicing fire safety and keeping an eye on all property around us. Over 90 percent of wildfires are caused by simple and careless human error.

Photo by: Rudy Fernandez
Photo by: Rudy Fernandez
Aleksei Nikolaev - Getty Images
Aleksei Nikolaev -
Getty Images

Wildfires are mostly caused by: campfires or trash fires, workers and welders out in the field (a simple weld spark or catalytic convertor) or cigarettes carelessly tossed out a car window. Interestingly, over 90% of disasters could be prevented.

Should you have to evacuate you'll need an "emergency evacuation plan", one should check with Safety.Gov to get all the accurate and complete notifications and alerts for when wildfires are in your neighborhood. Remember, to have all your medications, and important documents ready to grab and go.

Finally, make a plan we hope you will never have to use.


LOOK: The most expensive weather and climate disasters in recent decades

Stacker ranked the most expensive climate disasters by the billions since 1980 by the total cost of all damages, adjusted for inflation, based on 2021 data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). The list starts with Hurricane Sally, which caused $7.3 billion in damages in 2020, and ends with a devastating 2005 hurricane that caused $170 billion in damage and killed at least 1,833 people. Keep reading to discover the 50 of the most expensive climate disasters in recent decades in the U.S.