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Water conservation efforts in Monroe County important to public safety

Monroe County Fire Chief Matt Perry says people should take the water conservation seriously. High fire danger means higher need for water to fight them.

FORSYTH, Ga. — Monroe County Fire Chief Matt Perry and his crew have been awfully busy lately.

"I'd say it's every day that we deal with some sort of outside fire as opposed to a house, or a car, or something like that," Perry said.

This uptick in fires is all thanks to our extremely dry conditions.

"When we see these things -- everything dries out, lower humidity -- it runs a far higher risk for not only these fires to start easier, but they spread faster," Perry explained.

Fires nowadays have been spreading beyond county lines, Perry said. "We'll see a fire that starts up on the side of I-75 on the Bibb line and go all the way to the north end of the county with little spot fires that go up all the way along the interstate."

When it comes to fighting these frequent fires, they need water.

Monroe County remains under a water restriction, and following the new guidelines can be important for public safety.

In Monroe County their firetrucks carry about one to 3,000 gallons of water, but sometimes, that's just not enough.

"The same place you get water out of our tap is the same water we are gonna pull out of the ground out of your hydrant," Perry said.

"It's nice if there's something there," Perry continued.

The fire department recognizes the importance of conserving water, which is why they, too, are doing their part.

"To tell you how serious we're taking it, we stopped washing our fire trucks," Perry said.

He hopes the public will take the restriction seriously, too, to keep people safe until we can get some much needed rain.

Perry also advises to not throw cigarettes out of car windows and to be mindful of chains dragging on car trailers. Both can easily spark fires while driving down the road.

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