The McKinney Fire Department (MFD) is wishing a happy birthday to fire service icon Smokey the Bear for his 73rd birthday on Aug. 9. Smokey the Bear began his career in 1944 with a slogan, “Only you can prevent forest fires,” and has since been working hard to inspire Americans to prevent wildfires.
On Aug. 8, the National Interagency Fire Center reported two large fires, one in Texas and one in Washington. This brings the number of large fires burning across seven states to 42 and accounts for more than 772,000 acres of burning land. Currently, there are more than 16,000 firefighters and support personnel assigned to wildfires across the western part of the country.
Statistics from Jan. 1 to Aug. 8 tally more than 40,000 fires and just over 6 million acres burned across the nation.
“It’s important to know about wildfire and fire safety. Ninety percent of all fires are started by humans, whether from arson, careless behavior, or lack of fire safety,” said MFD Chief Danny Kistner. “Fires can strike anywhere at any time but icons like Smokey continue to inspire us to take the necessary fire precautions to keep us safe.”
For more information on wildland fires and fire and life safety issues, visit the Smoky the Bear website and the McKinney Fire Department website or call 972-547-2893.
McKinney, Texas, is unique by nature. As one of the fastest growing cities in America, McKinney has a current population of more than 168,000. The city was #1 on the list of Best Places to Live in America in 2014, published by Money Magazine. Established in 1848, the city is located 30 miles north of Dallas and is the county seat of Collin County. McKinney offers award-winning schools, a vibrant historic downtown, diverse housing options, a robust economy and a uniquely beautiful natural setting, with rolling hills and lush trees.