National Weather Service warns of high fire danger this afternoon and evening

May 4, 2015 by Rachel Cera

The National Weather Service in Binghamton has issued a "red flag warning" for all of Central New York and Northeast Pennsylvania. The warning, in effect from 1-7pm EDT, reflects weather conditions that carry a high risk of fire.

The affected area for today's red flag warning. Map courtesy of NWS Binghamton.The affected area for today's red flag warning. Map courtesy of NWS Binghamton.Meteorologist Drew Montreuil of Finger Lakes Weather says the specific weather conditions are "a sustained wind of 15+ mph, relative humidity less than 25%, and temperatures of 75° or higher." 

The National Weather Service says that under such conditions, "any fires that develop could spread rapidly. Outdoor burning is not recommended." Montreuil adds, "Extreme caution is urged with any sort of open flame or spark today. Even a carelessly thrown cigarette could quickly ignite a large brush fire." He says the dry conditions include local vegetation. "We have had below normal recent rainfall, and the spring green-up is not yet complete."

"Warm temperatures will create explosive fire growth potential," warns the National Weather Service. Showers are likely tonight, with a chance of showers tomorrow, which should lessen the fire risk for the rest of the week.

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