Red flag warning forecasts dangerous combination of high winds, low humidity

This file photo shows a structure going up in flames during the 1450 Fire in Hurricane, Utah, on May 18, 2020 | Photo by Aspen Stoddard, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — The National Weather Service in Salt Lake City has issued a red flag warning for portions of Southern Utah.

Weather advisories as of 11:11 a.m., April 13, 2021 | Map from National Weather Service – Salt Lake City office, St. George News | Click to enlarge

The warning is scheduled to start 2 p.m. Tuesday and last through 9 p.m. Wednesday, affecting the Color Country West Desert, Mojave Desert and Henry Mountains.

Winds from the southwest are expected at 15-25 mph, with gusts up to 35 mph. Relative humidity will be 10-15%. Any fires that develop could spread rapidly. Outdoor burning is not recommended.

According to the National Weather Service, a red flag warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now or are imminent. A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity and warm temperatures can contribute to extreme fire behavior.

Precautions and preparedness

If you are traveling or planning to recreate using ATVs or similar vehicles, take the following precautions to avoid starting a wildfire:

  • Avoid driving or parking your vehicle in tall grass.
  • Never throw a lighted cigarette out of a vehicle.
  • When pulling a trailer, attach safety chains securely; loose chains can drag on the pavement and cause sparks, igniting roadside fires.
  • Look behind you before driving away from fire-sensitive locations such as areas with tall grass or campsites to check for signs of a developing fire.
  • Always use a spark arrester on internal combustion engines.

For the most current conditions, warnings and advisories, go to the National Weather Service-Salt Lake City office website

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2021, all rights reserved.

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