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Tuesday, April 5, 2011

High Fire Danger Expected

The National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning for a large area including most of Central and Eastern Kansas. This area includes the entire Kansas City Metro area and Douglas County. All open burning is discouraged during this time.

The Red Flag Warning is in effect from Noon today until 7 p.m. this evening.

What is a Red Flag Warning? Definition from Weather.gov/glossary
A term used by fire-weather forecasters to call attention to limited weather conditions of particular importance that may result in extreme burning conditions. It is issued when it is an on-going event or the fire weather forecaster has a high degree of confidence that Red Flag criteria will occur within 24 hours of issuance. Red Flag criteria occurs whenever a geographical area has been in a dry spell for a week or two, or for a shorter period , if before spring green-up or after fall color, and the National Fire Danger Rating System (NFDRS) is high to extreme and the following forecast weather parameters are forecasted to be met:
1) a sustained wind average 15 mph or greater
2) relative humidity less than or equal to 25 percent and
3) a temperature of greater than 75 degrees F. 
In some states, dry lightning and unstable air are criteria. A Fire Weather Watch may be issued prior to the Red Flag Warning. 


Today's Conditions:
Winds are expected to be from the Southwest at speeds of 15 to 25 MPH with gusts nearing 30 MPH in the afternoon hours.

Humidity levels are expected to be low, between 18 to 23 percent. The lowest levels are expected across east central Kansas and west central Missouri.

Any fires that develop are likely to spread rapidly and become very difficult to control due to weather conditions.
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