UPDATE: Cause determined in Monday's grass fire

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NORTH PLATTE, Neb.-- UPDATE: Monday's grass fire started by a rekindled pile of Cedar trees. Fire Marshall George Lewis said the trees caught fire and caused the blaze that burned 20 acres of land.

The owner of the property, Greg Bland, received a burn permit on March 3rd, but failed to call the fire department on March 4th, the day he wanted to burn the trees.

Chief Deputy, Roland Kramer, said it is required that you call ahead to make sure conditions are safe.

Kramer said the state and North Platte was under a burn ban. On Monday, the fire rekindled due to windy conditions, with speeds up to 26m.p.h., and gusts of 31m.p.h..

The fire started on Sail Ridge and Prairie Ridge Road, south of Lake Maloney Golf Course and the lake.

Bland was issued a citation for being in violation of the burn ban. He is expected to appear in court on April 7th at 9a.m. for a misdemeanor.
Fire crews responded to a big grass fire just south of the Lake Maloney Golf Course on Monday Afternoon.

According to NPFD Battalion Chief Jason Trimble, there were crews from Maxwell, Hershey, Wallace and Wellfleet on the scene. When they arrived, Trimble said they found the fire ripping through trees, as well as threatening a house and garage.

"It's fairly intense when you have a grass fire," Trimble said. "But then it's even more intense when you know (that) somebody's house could be on fire. ... It does go up a notch, but we're able to handle it and get around it."

Most of Greater Nebraska is under a fire weather warning until Monday evening due to high winds and dry conditions, which allow for fires to spread and grow very rapidly.

Several fire fighters said the heavy wind gusts make putting out the blaze challenging. Trimble talked about those challenges.

"The wind makes it a lot harder to fight a fire," Trimble commented. "(We) are chasing it down."

Up to 65 mile-per-hour gusts are expected in the North Platte area on Monday afternoon. Trimble said there weren't any reported injuries. He also estimated that the fire torched 20 acres of land.

Read the original version of this article at www.knopnews2.com.