Fire Danger Skyrockets With Windy, Warm Air

Tuesday, April 17th 2018, 3:58 am
By: Alan Crone

Strong south winds will quickly develop this morning along with a return of warmer weather across eastern OK as a warm front rapidly expands across the area. 

Highs will reach at least into the upper 70s and lower 80s along with mostly sunny and windy weather.  There is a chance we could move into the mid-80s for some locations. The fire danger issues will increase both today and tomorrow across eastern OK while skyrocketing to critically high dangerous levels again this afternoon across the western third of the state.  

Red Flag warnings will be underway for these areas to our west both today and tomorrow.  

We’re tracking two storm systems over the next 7 days yet only the 2nd one will bring rain chances back to the state. The first system currently located over central California will move across the area late tonight into predawn Wednesday with a wind shift along with a few clouds.  Low level moisture does not appear deep enough for any significant chance of showers or storms with this frontal system.  

The 2nd system, currently about 3000 miles to our northwest, will near the state Friday into the weekend with increasing likelihoods for precipitation for part of the weekend.  Even far northwestern OK may finally see some beneficial rainfall after remaining so dry for the past year or so. 

This will not be a drought breaker but any rainfall in the fire ravaged areas will be greatly welcomed. 

Track Storms With WARN Team Radar

The main upper level pattern remains active as another strong looking upper level low will move across the central plains later tonight into Wednesday morning.  This will drag a surface front across the state pre-dawn Wednesday with a wind shift and a few clouds.   Data does support dew points climbing quickly ahead of this front but the moisture will remain very thin and should not support anything more than a quick sprinkle or at best, a narrow line of showers along the frontal passage. 

Since this extremely low chance occurs pre-dawn, and most folks will have very little chances of experiencing this, I’ll not include any pops in the forecast for the 7 days planner.  Most if not all model data does not produce any precip with this system.  Winds ahead of the front will be from the south today increasing speeds from 20 to 30 mph along with highs at least into the upper 70s and lower 80s across eastern OK.   We’ll have some bust potential today with the temps as we may exceed the forecast highs by a few degrees. 

 A dry line will punch into far western OK and may allow for extremely low humidity this afternoon with temps climbing once again into the 90s creating critically high fire danger spreads.  The cold front will sweep across the northeastern OK area pre-dawn Wednesday with northwest winds from 20 to 35 mph Wednesday morning to midday.  

Dry air will quickly move across the state and may lead to near Red Flag criteria for part of eastern OK while being reached to our west.   Pleasant and rather uneventful weather occurs Thursday before the next system arrives Friday into the weekend.

Friday storms will become more numerous across the high plains of Texas as a strong upper level low move across the state Friday night into Saturday.   In response, a surface area of low pressure will develop across southeastern Colorado and will move east to southeast during the day and evening.  Showers and storms will become more numerous across the high plains into western OK Friday afternoon and evening while eventually spreading across central and northern OK during the late Saturday afternoon or evening period, including the chance for some pockets of moderate to heavy rainfall for some locations. 

Connect With News On 6 Mobile Products

The main surface low appears to be tacking a southern route along the Texoma River Valley into north central TX by Saturday afternoon and evening.  This means the true warm sector of the cyclone will more than likely reside across the Red River Valley or northern TX, and this will limit our severe weather chances to the south while bringing pockets of moderate to occasionally heavy rainfall across part of northeastern OK.  Model data has slowed the progression of this system down quite a bit from previous runs. 

This means the start time may be later in the day Saturday and not clearing until early Sunday morning.  Some adjustments to the weekend temps should be expected as we eventually nail down the timing for the precip. 

Thanks for reading the Tuesday morning weather discussion and blog.\Have a super great day!

Alan Crone