Red flag conditions develop; fire weather warnings issued

Wind sock | Source photo by MWCPhoto/iStock/Getty Images Plus; St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Hot, dry, windy weather is in store for travelers on Interstate 15 heading to and through Las Vegas and on to the sunny beaches of California today through Friday evening.

The National Weather Service in Las Vegas has issued a red flag warning for fire weather conditions in southern Nevada extending into southeast California, which means if a wildfire starts it will spread quickly.

High winds combined with low humidity are expected across the Mojave Desert and into Nevada creating critical fire weather conditions. The warning is in effect from noon to 9 pm Friday.

Shaded areas denote region subject to fire weather watch for Friday, southern Nevada and California. Map generated Oct. 13, 2016 at 3:32 p.m. PDT | Image courtesy of National Weather Service, St. George News
Shaded areas denote region subject to fire weather watch for Friday, southern Nevada and California. Map generated Oct. 13, 2016 at 3:32 p.m. PDT | Image courtesy of National Weather Service, St. George News

Affected Area

Affected areas in Nevada include all of Clark County, including the cities of Las Vegas and Henderson; south west Lincoln County; Lake Mead National Recreation Area and the Colorado river. In California, affected areas include the Morongo and Yucca Valleys in the Mojave Desert.

Impact

High winds are expected to blow southwest 20 to 30 miles per hour with gusts up to 35 miles per hour. Humidity will drop to 10 to 15 percent.

This combination of strong winds, low relative humidity and warm temperatures can contribute to dangerous fire behavior.

Precautions

The following fire prevention safety tips are offered by Washington County Emergency Services:

  • Make sure you can legally burn in your area. Check with local authorities and obtain a permit.
  • Check the weather before you light a fire.  High winds, high temperatures and low humidity radically intensify fire.
  • Choose a safe burning site away from trees or bushes, buildings or other flammable fuels.
  • Have means, like water or an extinguisher, to douse your fire quickly.
  • Stay with your fire. Don’t leave it unattended.
  • Don’t burn garbage, waste, construction debris, plastic, foam, rubber or other offensive substances.
  • Don’t throw lighted material, including cigarettes, from vehicles.
  • Use fireworks with caution, obey fireworks laws and don’t use illegal fireworks.
  • Always extinguish the fire completely before you leave it.
  • Never park on, or drive through, dry grass.
  • Be careful with the use of heat or spark generating tools or ATVs.
  • If you live in a wildland interface area, be prepared for wildfire.
  • Provide for defensible space around your home and out buildings.
  • Have a wildfire action plan for your family.
  • Have your important documents and disaster kits ready to go in an emergency.
  • Leave early if a fire threatens your neighborhood.

Email: jwitham@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.

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