Fire Situation Report – March 20, 2019

Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry - Forestry Services

PROTECTION AREA STATISTICS for Reporting Period 03/19/2019 thru 03/20/2019 

NE Area – 11 Fires Burned 405 Acres (Cause: 8-Incendiary, 2-Escaped Debris,1-Escaped Controlled Burn)

EC Area – 3 Fires Burned 725 Acres (Cause: 1-Incendiary, 1-Escaped Control Burn, 1-Escaped Debris)

SE Area – 3 Fires Burned 15 Acres (Cause: 2-Incendiary, 1-Escaped Debris)

Large / Significant Fire Activity within the Protection Area: 

  • Coopers Hollow Fire (Latimer County) – 700 acres, 75% Contained
  • Lane School Rd. Fire (Cherokee County) – 160 Acres, 75% Contained
  • Starkiller Fire (Sequoyah County) – 250 acres est., 100% Contained

Fire Activity with OFS Response outside of the Protection Area: 

  • Ball BBQ Fire (Pittsburg County) – 200 acres est., 100% Contained

OFS Prescribed Fire Activity: No New Activity 

FIRE DEPARTMENT STATISTICS from recorded on 03/19/2019 thru 03/20/2019 

  • 1 Fire Burned 200 Acres (Cause: 1-Misc) Cleveland FD Reporting

Boston Pool Fire (Pawnee County) – 200 Acres, 100% Contained

41 Fire (Woodward County) – 100 acres est., 100% Contained

  • Numerous additional wildfires occurred with reporting ongoing

Statewide Discussion: 

Light rain continues to move through Oklahoma this morning calming the fires occurring over the course of the past few days.  On the backside of this frontal boundary, clearing skies and drier air will encourage drying of dormant fine fuels with limited fire danger reemerging north and west of the I-44 corridor.
Today, highest fire danger indices today will be present in north-central Oklahoma extending west into northwest counties and the Oklahoma Panhandle.  In this area, temperature will be somewhat cooler 57°-64° under clear skies.  Afternoon relative humidity values will range from 15% in Cimarron County to 35% in north-central counties.  The lowest fine-dead fuel moisture values will be reserved for the western Panhandle where 4% observations may be realized while 6-7% expected progressing east through the area.  Post-frontal, northwest winds sustained 10-15 mph will support moderate rates of fire spread in contiguous grass fuels.
-Dominant grass fuels in the western Panhandle will support 80 ft./min. with flame lengths averaging 7-12 ft.  
-Grass fuels prevalent in the north-central counties where heavier loading is present will have potential to exhibit rates of spread 140-190 ft./min. with head fire flame lengths 11-17 ft.
Elsewhere in Oklahoma, concerning fire danger will struggle to develop although some initial attack activity should be expected along, north and west of the I-44 corridor as skies clear and fuels dry into the afternoon.
Dry conditions continue into Thursday although forecasted light and variable winds will limit fire spread potential.  Warmer temperatures in the mid- to upper-60°’s and relative humidity values as low as 23% in far western Oklahoma delivering receptive fine-dead fuels will facilitate increasing fire danger indices although limited by the lack of substantial winds.  Relative humidity values increase progressively from west to east with values in the mid-30%’s east.  Initial attack efforts are expected to be successful.
Rain chances are forecasted to progress from west to east Friday through Saturday.  Presently, a dry line is expected Sunday which will bear watching although wetting rains prior may likely negate concerns.  Current quantitative precipitation forecasts indicate that wetting rains in the near-term forecast combined with seasonally warming temperatures will encourage the gradual transition toward green- up, especially where cool season grasses and forbs are present.
Burn Ban Status:   No Burn Bans presently in effect.