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North Kitsap fire departments enjoy a quiet Fourth

Moist weather may have helped keep the Independence Day weekend quiet for North Kitsap fire responders.

North Kitsap Fire and Rescue responded to five calls on Sunday, none were related to fireworks, spokeswoman Michele Laboda said. North Kitsap Fire's call volume throughout the weekend was less than half what it was in 2009, when hot weather forced an outdoor burn ban by July 8.

Poulsbo Fire Department fielded seven calls on the Fourth, none caused by fireworks, Battalion Chief Bruce Peterson said.

Call volumes for North Kitsap Fire were slightly below average throughout the weekend. Only a stump fire on July 2 may have been started by fireworks, but the cause was never pinpointed.

Laboda said the overcast weather and wet grass helps prevent wayward fireworks from sparking brush and forest fires.

"It usually bodes well for a quieter day than we would normally have," Laboda said.

North Kitsap Fire's busiest Fourth of July was in 2003, when the agency received 40 calls in 12 hours. The agency received 14 calls on July 4, 2009, though temperatures in the 80s and low humidity made conditions more dangerous than in 2003.

Laboda said the down economy may have played a role in the decline in calls between 2003 and 2009, with families cutting back on fireworks purchases.

– Tad Sooter

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