The abnormally dry conditions are starting to have an impact. The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has placed the entire Valley in an elevated fire risk for Tuesday. The map outlook can be seen below.
There have already been numerous brush fires reported across the Valley the past couple of days due to the dry ground and gusty winds. Monday makes 16 days straight without any precipitation at the Youngstown/Warren Regional Airport, and officials are urging people to refrain from burning over the next couple days as more dry weather is in the forecast.
The risk for fires is easy to understand by looking at the forecast. On Tuesday afternoon, relative humidity values will be between 25%-30%, which means that the air will be dry. Additionally, wind gusts out of the northwest will be around 20-25 MPH, which can assist in the spread of fires.
When is the last time there was a fire weather outlook? Interestingly enough, the last day there was an “elevated” fire risk in the Valley was back on April 20, 2023. This was during a 9-day long dry weather streak which featured multiple record breaking temperatures. However, this is not a very common weather event in our area.
Is there any chance of rain in the future to help with the fire activity? Unfortunately, there is little chance of any rain during the work week. There are slight chances of showers on Thursday and Friday, but that rain would do little to impact the growing rainfall deficit across the area. However, the best chance of showers in two weeks will be on Sunday, when a storm system is forecast to impact the Valley.