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Red Flag Fire Warning/Fire Weather Watch/High WInd Advisory

Okiedawn OK Zone 7
12 years ago

Due to the high winds in the forecast for today and the next several days, a serious threat of fire danger has returned to Oklahoma.

PLANTS: With regard to young seedlings that are being hardened off outdoors, be aware that strong wind can damage and kill new seedlings very, very quickly, and the higher the windspeed, the more quickly it can happen. If hardening off plants outdoors during the next few days, keep an eye on the wind and be sure to put the plants in a location that provides adequate shelter from the wind.

With young plants in the ground, there's not a lot you can do unless you can cover them up with a row cover or bedsheets if you see the wind is taking a severe toll on them. Misting them lightly with water sometimes helps them as it puts some moisture back onto/into the leaves.

HIGH WIND & FIRE WEATHER: A RED FLAG FIRE WARNING has been issued for several western OK counties, and others have a Fire Weather Watch in SW OK and a Wind Advisory in NW OK. If you live in these counties or adjacent to them, you should be aware of the danger, and report all signs of fire (smoke, flame, etc.) promptly to local authorities. If fire is approaching your property and you must leave, turn on a sprinkler between your house and the fire in an effort to protect your home and landscape.

We all like to think that wildfire will never reach our homes, but it does happen. For those of you who are newer here or who weren't online much last spring, a family member of one of our forum members lost their home (in a city, not out in the boonies) during last year's horrible wildfire outbreak. Wildfire travels quickly, in fact with astonishing quickness, in high wind conditions. While wildfires are more common out in rural grassland areas, they happen in towns and cities of all sizes as well. Several different times, I've seen entire small cities in southern OK (Loco, Velma, Ratliff City, etc.) evacutated as the cities became virtually surrounded by wildfire.

Fire danger will be very high to extreme through the weekend and into next week. Remember that the same high wind/high temp/low humidity conditions that lead to high fire danger are also weather conditions that are hard on young plants.

I've linked the Enhanced Weather Page below so you can see if your county has a Fire Weather Watch or Red Flag Fire Warning. That map is at the very bottom of the page. If you are new to 'fire weather' the 'Fire Weather Watch' is the same level of warning as a thunderstorm or tornado watch and the 'Red Flag Fire Warning' is the same level of warning as a thunderstorm or tornado watch.

Should wildfire approach your area, you may receive an evacuation notice via your Weather or All-Hazards Alert Radio, so pay heed if the weather radio alert goes off.

Dawn

Here is a link that might be useful: Fire Warning/Watch Map from Norman NWS

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