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Dick Faurot's Weather Blog: Fire Weather Concerns; Rain Later In The Week

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Fire weather remains the primary concern over the course of the next couple of days, but there is some hope on the horizon for a decent chance of badly needed rainfall later in the week.

First, though, is the combination of very warm temperatures, low humidity values during the heat of the day, and gusty winds that occurred during the day today and will likely repeat again on Tuesday. Notice the max/min temperature map for today, and keep in mind that the normal range for Tulsa at this time of year is 72/50. Then notice the maximum winds that occurred today, with wind gusts to near 30 mph at times - not a good combination.

As mentioned, Tuesday will be much the same, as you can see on our forecast page, with well above normal temperatures, gusty southerly winds and relative humidity levels dropping into the 20-30 percent range during the heat of the day. Notice also, that a burn ban has been expanded for the far SE counties of the state, as those are the areas that have been most impacted by the flash drought that has developed since the rains quit back in the first week of July.

Wednesday will also be much warmer than normal, but we should start seeing more low-level moisture streaming this way in advance of an approaching storm system; and the winds are not expected to be quite as strong, so the fire danger will be mitigated somewhat. About the only clouds will be some high-level cirrus clouds also in advance of the approaching storm system as we go through the day Wednesday.

Most of what shower activity that develops ahead of this next system will be confined to the more western counties through Wednesday and Thursday, but all the longer range guidance has been consistent for several days now in bringing that on our way for later in the week.

As always, at time frames beyond a couple of days there is uncertainty regarding the exact track/strength/timing of this next system, which is why the rain chances are spread out over several days going into this coming weekend. Bottom line though is that this system has the potential to be a good rainmaker for the entire state, particularly the more southern counties which are the ones that have been hit hardest by the developing drought.

Notice the 7-day QPF map and keep in mind this represents an areal average. In other words, some locations could end up with twice the amount indicated while nearby locations have half what is indicated, but even at that, it looks to be a good rainmaker.

So, stay tuned and check back for updates.

Dick Faurot

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