Fire Situation Report – March 14, 2019


Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry - Forestry Services

PROTECTION AREA STATISTICS for Reporting Period 03/13/2019 thru 03/14/2019 

NE Area – 

EC Area – No New Activity

SE Area – 

Large / Significant Fire Activity within the Protection Area: No New Activity

Fire Activity with OFS Response outside of the Protection Area: 5 Fires / 487 Acres

Lacey Fire (Custer County) – 415 Acres, 50% Contained

OFS Prescribed Fire Activity: No New Activity 

FIRE DEPARTMENT STATISTICS from www.firereporting.ok.gov recorded on 03/13/2019 thru 03/14/2019 

  • 1 Fire Burned 25 Acres (Cause: 1-Misc) Tecumseh FD Reporting
  • Numerous Wildfires noted through Media Outlets

Statewide Discussion: 

Wildfire activity yesterday initiated in the early afternoon hours as very strong winds materialized in concert with warming temperatures and falling relative humidity values as a dry line pushed eastward into Oklahoma.  Fortunately, wetting rains ahead of the system served to moderate fuel moisture providing opportunity for successful initial attack by firefighting resources.  Strong winds today, although not as intense as yesterday, and drying fuels will hold fire danger in place this afternoon across much of Oklahoma.  Cooler, post-frontal temperatures and relative humidity values generally above 30% will limit potential for large fire occurrence.  Good probability of initial attack success is expected although upper level soil moisture will limit engine access in many locations.
Today:  Moderate to high fire danger indices will be present across much of the state with the highest fire danger indices present in northwest Oklahoma.  Areas of western, southwestern and central Oklahoma will observe elevated fire danger while sky cover in northern and northeastern counties will likely limit fine-dead fuels from becoming overly receptive.
Northwestern Oklahoma – Temperatures 43°-52°, afternoon relative humidity values 32-36% and limited sky cover will hold fine-dead fuel moisture values above critical concern with widespread 7% observations and some sites registering 6%.  Northwest winds sustained 25-35 mph gusting 40-50 mph will again support erratic fire behavior including wind-driven runs.  In uniform, continuous grass-dominated fuels expect rates of spread 290-350 ft./min (+/- 3 mph) with flame lengths 12-18 ft. at the head fire.  Those quickest rates of spread reserved for areas where available fuels are aligned with wind and topography.
Western, Southwestern and Central Oklahoma – Temperatures 51°-59°, very limited sky cover and afternoon relative humidity values 30-44% yielding fine-dead fuel moisture values of 7% across much of the area.  Northwest winds sustained 15-25 mph gusting 30-40 mph at times will support moderate to rapid rates of fire spread.  Timber-litter and heavy brush types will continue to serve as a limiting barrier to fire spread where fire behavior will be greatly reduced.  In uniform, continuous grass-dominated fuels, rates of spread 200-260 ft./min. with head fire flame lengths 11-15 ft. are expected on fires that become established
On Friday, drying conditions continue with temperatures broadly in the 50°’s and afternoon relative humidity values falling below 30% in western Oklahoma and 30-38% elsewhere.  Winds will remain northerly; however much less intense with sustained speeds more on the lines of 10-15 mph.
A gradual warming/drying trend through the weekend will hold moderate fire danger in place.  Light winds will limit rates of fire spread providing for high probability of initial attack success.
Resources:    Resource Hotline (800) 800-2481
– OFS Task Forces (Woodward/Weatherford/Lawton)
Special Note to Firefighters:
Saturated soils will render numerous challenges and safety concerns when firefighters are engaged in mobile engine attack.  Firefighters are encouraged to scout access prior to committing engines on the fireline, attack from the black to insure that vehicles do not become stuck in unburned fuels and anchor fires at the heel progressing on the flanks toward the head.  If values at risk are threatened, consider establishing point protection tactics insuring egress and escape routes to safety zones are established.  
To facilitate a quick and meaningful training discussion, firefighters can refer to the Oklahoma Wildland Tailgate series, Engine Tactics edition at http://www.forestry.ok.gov/tailgate
 

Burn Ban Status: No Burn Bans presently in effect.