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(Kansas City) (AP) – The return of hot, dry weather to western Missouri is prompting warnings from the state Conservation Department that the risk of wildfires remains high.

Parts of the region received some rainfall over the weekend. But the agency says it wasn’t enough to end the wildfire danger, given the severity of this year’s drought. Burn bans are still in place for all Conservation Department land and in many counties.

Regional forestry supervisor Mark Nelson says the department helped fight a 40-acre blaze Monday in west-central Missouri. Since July 1, MDC crews have averaged one fire a day in rural west-central Missouri or the Kansas City metro area.

Nelson says the public is urged to be careful with lit cigarettes and with farm machinery that can give off sparks.

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