UPDATE, 2/19: The National Weather Service has issued a new Red Flag Warning (Fire Weather Warning) for Friday. It will be in effect from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
1. What is a Fire Weather Warning?
The National Weather Service issues this when we are dealing with warm temperatures, low humidity and strong winds along with a dry ground.
2. What are the official parameters the National Weather Service uses to issue the warning?
- WIND: Southwest winds gusting at 40 mph.
- HUMIDITY: As low as 30 percent.
- IMPACTS: Any fires that occur will spread rapidly.
- Outdoor burning is not recommended at this time.
3. What can you do to help? Avoid outdoor grilling because burning embers can escape. Do not throw cigarettes out the window. Overall, avoid any activity that includes outdoor burning as the wind can spread a fire very rapidly.
4. How long will this last? Even though Friday and Saturday will be dry and warm, we'll have much less wind, so it is likely the Fire Weather Warning will be lifted then.
5. Rain will help, right? When is the next chance of rain? There is a chance Saturday night, but only a small one; we've got a 20 or 30 percent shot at rain.
Jeff Penner can be reached at email@example.com.