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The Southwest Prevention and Information Committee has announced the week of Sunday, March 30, to Saturday, April 5, as Southwest Wildfire Awareness Week, and has asked that residents, businesses and communities do what they can to be prepared and reduce the risk of wildfires.Wildfire Season is an annual occurrence in the Southwest. High winds, dry vegetation and sporadic rainfall means the desert landscape is ripe for a fire caused by lightning strikes or careless human activity. Last year, 19 firefighters from Prescott died fighting a wildfire near the small town of Yarnell.

The Doce Fire near Prescott, the Gladiator Fire near Crown King and the Wallow Fire near Alpine destroyed more than 552,700 acres in Arizona since 2011.

Natasha Holstein, community preparedness and resilience manager for the American Red Cross Grand Canyon Chapter, issued a letter to media outlets stating the importance of preparedness in the event of wildfires, especially in Arizona.

For the full story, see the Friday, March 28, edition of the Sedona Red Rock News.

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