Weather Forecast


Firefighters extinguish rubbish fire near Dakotafest grounds

Members of the Mitchell Fire Department respond to a controlled burn just west of the Dakotafest grounds that got out of control and spread east towards the structures on top of the hill on Monday morning. (Matt Gade / Republic)

Grass near the Dakotafest grounds caught fire Monday when a garbage burn grew out of control.

At about 11:45 a.m., six Mitchell firefighters responded to a call just west of the Dakotafest grounds, southeast of Mitchell, where a patch of grass caught flame.

According to firefighter Rob Parker, who was the officer in charge of the incident, the land's owner, Gary Schlaffman, was burning a rubbish pile when the wind shifted and carried embers from the fire and burned less than one acre of grass.

Firefighters with two grass rigs and one tanker extinguished the blaze in about 15 minutes and remained on scene for about 15 more.

No one was injured, no property was damaged, and no citations were issued.

Parker urged anyone planning on starting a controlled burn to be cautious of wind, as it can be unpredictable.

"We always tell them to make sure you know what the wind's going to do," Parker said, "but we're in South Dakota, so that's not always feasible."