WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) — Fire season will be here before you know it. Despite extreme drought conditions in much of Kansas, some experts say this year, the danger may not be as bad compared to years past.

But, they are warning things can change in an instant.

The Kansas Fire Service tells KSN News the difference between this year’s models and years past is recent moisture and the potential to warm up sooner.

The Kansas Mesonet, along with other models, are optimistic, but Mark Neely, the state fire management officer for the Kansas Forest Service, says to take that with a grain of salt.

“We’ve seen models in the past saying the same things,” Neely said. “Some of what they’re basing on, if you look at the past two years, those models trended the same way, and we didn’t have that green up. We had very active fire seasons the past two years.

Weather is a huge factor for wildfires, but also for people. Neely says most fires are caused by our own actions, but there are some ways to be proactive.

He says a clean property is a more resilient property. So, make sure to remove dead vegetation away from your house.

“The leaves are still there, they still blow around, and they blow up into holes around the home and in the gutters. We need to clean those out.”

Also, he and Lieutenant Derek Highbarger with the Augusta Department of Public Safety say to pay attention to the weather.

“Low humidity could be more apt to having a good fire or a lasting fire,” Highbarger said. “Wind speed, we won’t issue burn permits unless the wind speed is under 15 mph.”

Regardless of the models, the Augusta Fire Department makes sure it’s prepared year-round.

“We watch the weather, maintain our trucks, check our trucks almost daily, make sure they’re ready to go,” Highbarger said.

Neely says even if you aren’t doing a prescribed burn, be aware of high fire danger, checking for high winds, low humidity, and higher temperatures because fires can start easily and unexpectedly.