The National Weather Service in Des Moines has issued a Red Flag Warning until 8 PM this evening for extreme fire conditions across northern Iowa. A red flag warning means that critical fire weather conditions are forecast. A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity and warm temperatures will create explosive fire growth potential.
Counties included are: Butler, Hardin, Greene, Boone, Story, Emmet, Kossuth, Winnebago, Worth, Palo Alto, Hancock, Cerro Gordo, Pocahontas, Humboldt, Wright, Franklin, Sac, Calhoun, Webster, Hamilton, Crawford, Carroll.
The combination of low relative humidity, abnormally dry conditions and strong southwest winds today will result in extreme fire weather conditions.
Timing or short term trends for this afternoon and early evening:
Wind: Southwest Winds at 20 to 25 mph with gusts of 30 to 35 mph
Relative Humidity: 15 to 25 percent
Fuel: Field crops are nearly cured and are highly combustible which will lead to rapid fire growth today. In addition, the drying of grasses is well ahead of schedule due to the hot and dry conditions this summer.
Impacts: Fires will experience rapidly fire growth and will be very difficult to contain today.