Dry weather is causing local fire departments to keep a close eye on potential fire hazards in the area. The risk seems concentrated to the northern part of west-central Saskatchewan, as joining a fire ban inside the Town of Unity for most of April have been bans for the three surrounding RM's of Round Valley, Grass Lake, and Tramping Lake.

WestCentralOnline checked in with Unity Fire & Rescue on Thursday to discuss the current status, prior to the Town of Unity sharing the following post on Friday morning.

Snow and ice last week joined trace amounts of rain. Fire Chief Colby Klein says that despite the bit of moisture lately, it's just frankly not enough.

"It never made a difference. Had a couple little rains where it mostly just makes the ground wet."

Assessing the current fire risk in the area, Klein spoke specifically to Unity.

"It's definitely high. Even though things are starting to green up a bit, it's all of last years dead growth still on top. With the lack of moisture, just sitting on top all dry, it doesn't take much of a spark, or even a cigarette to light that up." said Klein on the hazardous conditions. 

The fire department had a busy stretch earlier in April where the area saw at least three different fires light up in a 24 hour span. Klein talked about fighting a fire about 50 KM away from Unity in the Winter area that kept his team busy.

"Our whole crew was up at Winter. We had a big fire up there, had five departments at it actually." said Klein.

Once that fire was extinguished, they shifted focus to another one closer to town, and also sent another unit out to help a massive team effort attempting to put out a fire near Rodeo Road.

"Between the locals with the shovels, and a local business taking a water truck out there," recalled Klein, "We responded with one unit, but they were able to get it under control with what they had." commended the chief. 

A few shots of rain are in the forecast for Unity looking at potentially this weekend, and next week. More moisture will be necessary to make sure the situation gets better, as it's likely a waiting game for now around west-central.