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Agricultural News

Monday, November 22, 2021 Fire Situation Report

Mon, 22 Nov 2021 09:21:11 CST

Monday, November 22, 2021 Fire Situation Report Statewide Discussion: Dry conditions have prevailed and are expected to remain in place until another cold front edges into Oklahoma on Wednesday. Ahead of this front, fire danger is expected to increase with above normal temperatures, gusty southerly winds and relative humidity levels dipping below 30% during the late afternoon in most locations. Fuels are still considered to be in transition from growing to dormant although tipping further toward dormancy with recent frost/freeze conditions. Shading and sheltering in timber fuels is rapidly declining as leaf-fall progresses with increasing fire behavior expected in the near-term as timber litter cure. Rain chances will follow the cold front on Wednesday - meager chances west with best opportunity for wetting amounts in eastern and southeastern counties.

Today: Fine-dead fuel moisture during the afternoon will range from 5% (isolated 4%) in the Oklahoma Panhandle to 6% in western and central counties and 7% observations east. Temperatures will be in the mid-50?ís to low-60?ís with relative humidity values as low as 12% western Panhandle to around 30% in eastern Oklahoma. Light and variable winds in the morning will gradually become southwesterly sustained 9-13 mph with some higher gusts during a brief period in the afternoon. Fire behavior is not expected to present significant suppression challenge with rangeland fuels exhibiting head fire rates of spread 97-131 ft./min. and flame lengths 8-10 ft. on established fires.

Tuesday: The pre-frontal fire environment will present above normal temperatures, gusty southwesterly winds and low relative humidity over fuels that are rapidly transitioning to dormancy and cured status. Marginal overnight moisture recovery will promote an earlier development of burning conditions. Fortunately, shorter daylight (heating) period will also serve to gradually relax winds overnight. The highest fire danger indices will be present in the Oklahoma Panhandle and western tier of counties where wetting rains have been absent for well over one-month promoting rangeland fuels dormancy.

∑ OK PH/Western Tier - Temperature upper-60?ís to mid-70?ís under mostly-clear skies and afternoon relative humidity values 14-23% supporting fine-dead fuel moisture values at 5%. Southwest winds sustained 19-25 mph with gusts to 35 mph. Rangeland fuels will exhibit rates of spread 210-270 ft./min. (300 ft./min. where heavier rangeland fuels are aligned with both wind and topography). Head fire flame lengths 10-14 ft. should be expected. There is some limited large fire (>300 ac.) potential although significant fire occurrence is unlikely.

∑ Along/North of I-44 - Temperature 66?-72? under mostly-clear skies and afternoon relative humidity values 22-31% will yield fine-dead fuel moisture values 6-7% in transitional fuels. Southerly winds sustained 15-22 mph with some gusts approaching 30 mph. will support grassland rates of spread 140-210 ft./min. and head fire flame lengths 11-17 ft. Mixed fuels will support ROS 51-81 ft./min. with FL 7-11 ft. and single tree torching / short range spotting.

∑ South of I-44 - Temperature 65?-71? under mostly clear skies with afternoon relative humidity values 27-36% will support fine-dead fuel moisture values at 7% in most locations. Southerly winds 10-17 mph with gusts above 20 mph at times will support grass-dominated fire behavior with rates of spread 97-182 ft./min. and head fire flame lengths 8-13 ft. Hardwood timber will generally exhibit ROS 12-27 ft./min with head fire FL 4-6 ft. Drier pine-dominated sites may exhibit single tree torching with limited spotting potential.

Wednesday: The cold front will work through Oklahoma Wednesday into the overnight. Again, the best chance for wetting rains is in eastern and southeastern Oklahoma based on current forecast information. Improved dew point temperatures and building sky cover will serve to halt development of critical fine-fuel dryness. Additionally, winds are forecasted to be somewhat less substantial Affording good probability of initial attack success.

Near-Term: The Wednesday cold front does offer some opportunity for rainfall, the near-term is predominantly dry. While no near-term weather system presents specific concern, we are nearing that time of the year where the pre-frontal fire environment can present suppression challenges especially when combined with pot-frontal dryness.

Burn Bans: Cimarron & Texas Counties, click here for the most current burn ban information and links to specific burn ban proclamations. OK-FIRE Training: No-Cost training opportunities are available December 8 & 9 covering the utility of OK-FIRE pertaining to wildfire, prescribed fire and smoke management. Classes will be conducted virtually utilizing the Zoom platform and are intended for new and experienced users. A more detailed course description and registration details can be found here.



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