Calm and Nice Today, Fires Possible Tomorrow

A combination of hot temps for the season, strong wind, very low humidity and dead grassland will lead to higher risks for rangeland fire tomorrow. We have a bit of a lull today with light wind and much warmer than normal temperatures. And don’t look now, but there could be some snow Friday.

To blame: a strong cold front that will bring dangerous severe weather conditions to the Arkaltex and vicinity, moving east into the Deep South by Saturday.

Risks for tomorrow

Gusty south to southwest winds at 15 to 25 mph and afternoon relative humidity values as low as 18 to 28 percent. Wind gusts as high as 35 mph possible at times.

NWS Dodge City, in the morning weather briefing

DDC continues, saying “Gusty south to southwest winds and relative humidity values ranging from 18 to 28 percent will produce conditions where Elevated to Near Significant Fire Risk Levels will be possible across much of southwest Kansas on Wednesday. West of Garden City to Liberal line is the area where the lowest relative humidity values will be Wednesday afternoon.”

Similar risks are expected for south-central and southeast Kansas, according to NWS Wichita:

South winds will be on the increase Wed afternoon and will stay up into the evening hours. Currently looking at sustained speeds around 30 mph with gusts approaching 40 mph by around 3 pm Wed. Don’t think it’s out of the question these speeds may even be higher, depending how much much cloud cover we get. RH values Wed afternoon are looking to be in the 30%-35% range and will quickly increase Wed night. We are starting to see some counties light up with extreme grassland fire danger values and think there’s a chance we may end up needing a red flag warning for parts of the area Wed into Wed evening, especially if higher winds continue to
look possible.

NWS Wichita, Area Forecast Discussion

Tommorrow, we’ll talk about the snow chances for Friday. Right now the models disagree whether the highest snow depths will be in Oklahoma or Kansas. While many of us may see snow, it’s not expected to be a major problem.

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