Fire Situation Report – April 3, 2019

Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry - Forestry Services

PROTECTION AREA STATISTICS for Reporting Period 04/02/2019 thru 04/03/2019 

NE Area – 2 Fires Burned 9 Acres (Cause: 1-Escaped Debris,1-Escaped Control Burn)

EC Area – 4 Fires Burned 0.5 Acres (Cause: 4-Equipment)

SE Area – 2 Fires Burned 1.1 Acres (Cause: 1-Incendiary, 1-Escaped Debris)

Large / Significant Fire Activity within the Protection Area: 

  • South McGee Creek Fire (Atoka County) – 313 Acres, 100% Contained

Fire Activity with OFS Response outside of the Protection Area: No New Activity

OFS Prescribed Fire Activity: 1 Rx Fire Treating 40 Acres

FIRE DEPARTMENT STATISTICS from recorded on 04/02/2019 thru 04/03/2019 

  • No New Activity Reported
  • Wildfire Activity Noted through Media Outlets

Statewide Discussion: 

Conditional fire danger will develop in western Oklahoma ahead of storm potential this afternoon while elevated fire weather and fuels subjected to repetitive days of drying will result in potential for rapid rates of fire spread in the northeast quadrant of the state. Green-up is progressing in southeast and parts of central Oklahoma with warming soil temperatures and available moisture although warm-season grasses remain primarily dormant and timbered fuels unshaded and available.

Northeast Quadrant: Temperatures will top out right at 70° today with relative humidity values 30-37%. Sky cover is expected to persist through the day providing some fuel shading holding 1 hr. fuel moisture values at 7-8% with 6% observations expected in areas where skies clear. Wind speeds will increase through the day with south-southeast winds during peak burning conditions sustained 15-22 mph gusting 25-30 mph and occasionally 35 mph. Dormant, warm-season grasses will support rapid rates of fire spread on established fires in the range of 176-250 ft./min (2-2.8 mph) with head fire flame lengths 12-15 ft. average. Grass/Brush fuels will deliver rates of spread 53-84 ft./min. with flame lengths 9-12 ft. Timber litter fuels will offer opportunity to utilize direct tactics with rates of spread more on the lines of 10-16 ft./min. with flame lengths generally less than 4 ft.

Western Oklahoma: A dry line is expected to hang up just west of the 100th meridian introducing storm chances this afternoon. Relative humidity values are not expected to dip into critical ranges with the exception of the western Panhandle on the backside of the dry line. Placement of the dry line will be a large factor in developing fire danger ahead of the storm potential; however the consensus is the temperatures will be in the upper-60°’s to 70° with relative humidity values 39-50% holding fine-dead fuel moisture values at or above 7%. Nonetheless, the drying in previous days and dry conditions ahead of the storm chances will present receptive fuels for a period today, and south winds sustained 20-25 mph with gusts near 30 will support rapid rates of spread in dormant, native grass dominated fuels on the order of 200-255 ft./min. (2-2.9 mph) with flame lengths with 15 ft. maximum. Additionally, areal precipitation amounts are slight outside of storm cells holding a limited opportunity for lightning ignitions in place.

Western Oklahoma Panhandle: Cimarron and parts of Texas Counties are expected to reside on the backside of the dry line and fuels will likely be quite receptive. Lightning Activity Level – 2, suggests lightning ignitions are a possibility especially in the mesa country. In this area sky cover may limit fine-dead fuels from reaching critical values, but temperatures 68°-71° and relative humidity values 18-26% will facilitate 1-hr. fuels observations of 5%. Wind speeds are not expected to burdensome delivering moderate rates of fire spread and respectable opportunity for initial attack success.

Southern Oklahoma: Afternoon relative humidity values are expected to hold fine-dead fuel moisture values above critical thresholds although southerly winds sustained 15-20 surrounding I-35 and 10-15 mph in southeast Oklahoma will support some opportunity for rapid rates of fire spread where available fuels are aligned with both topography and wind direction.

The post-frontal environment is poised to provide a reduction in fire danger on Thursday with the driest atmospheric conditions held in the Texas Panhandle into New Mexico.

Burn Ban Status: No Burn Bans presently in effect.