Portions of Jackson County are in a severe drought, and it's putting a strain on volunteer fire departments.
Stevenson is right in the heart of the severe drought in North Alabama. Volunteer firefighters say they want people to be more careful because the dry conditions mean more fires.
A standard volume of calls to the Stevenson Volunteer Fire Department is about 20 calls in two weeks. Most are for medical emergencies.
In the last two weeks, they've taken 25 calls, and nearly half were for fires. The higher number of calls can be overwhelming because the volunteers have day jobs.
"It's a hit or miss on how many people are there in a given day," Asst. Chief James Roote said.
Most of the fires they've seen have been caused by people throwing cigarette butts out their windows or pulling over on the side of the road and accidentally starting grass fires with the heat of their cars.
Firefighters want to remind everyone to be mindful in the extreme drought and extra careful with open flames.
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