Storm Prediction Center Day 1 Fire Weather Outlook

Created: Fri Feb 24 16:37:02 UTC 2017 (20170224 1700Z Day 1 FireWX shapefile | 20170224 1700Z Day 1 FireWX KML)

Day 1 Fire Weather Forecast graphic
Risk Area (sq. mi.) Area Pop. Some Larger Population Centers in Risk Area
Critical 110,355 2,813,906 Lubbock, TX...Laredo, TX...Midland, TX...Odessa, TX...Las Cruces, NM...

Click for Day 1 FireWX Areal Outline Product

   FNUS21 KWNS 241632

   Day 1 Fire Weather Outlook  
   NWS Storm Prediction Center Norman OK
   1032 AM CST Fri Feb 24 2017

   Valid 241700Z - 251200Z


   ...Portions of the southern Plains and southern/central New
   A warm airmass remains in place across southern portions of much of
   the region, evidenced by the warm low-level temperatures (below 700
   mb) sampled by regional 12Z soundings. In fact, the 850 mb
   temperatures of 18, 22, and 23 deg C at DRT, BRO, and CRP,
   respectively, are near the maximum climatological values (based on
   SPC sounding climatology). Expectation is for temperatures across
   south TX to reach the mid to upper 80s, despite passage of the
   surface cold front this afternoon. Minimum RH values from the mid
   teens to upper single-digits are expected. Additionally, the surface
   pressure gradient coupled with deep boundary-layer mixing and
   moderate flow aloft to support breezy northerly winds. Sustained
   values around 20 mph are likely and the resulting combination of dry
   and windy conditions merits expansion of the critical area southward
   along the Rio Grande into deep south TX. 

   Elsewhere across the region, a dry post-frontal airmass will support
   very dry surface conditions amidst a deeply mixed boundary-layer.
   Afternoon RH values will drop into the low teens and upper
   single-digits across the southern High Plains amidst gusty westerly
   winds from 20 to 30 mph. As such, critical fire weather conditions
   are still anticipated across much of the region with only minor
   changes need to the previous outlook area. 

   Elevated to locally critical fire weather conditions are still
   expected across the remainder of the region (central/north
   central/northwest TX and the TX Hill Country) with sustained wind
   speeds from 15 to 20 mph occurring amidst RH values ranging from the
   teens to upper 20s. Primary factor precluding critical conditions
   across the TX Hill Country and northwest TX is sustained wind speeds
   below 20 mph while increased low-level moisture and higher minimum
   RH values will act as the primary mitigating factor across
   central/north-central TX.

   ..Mosier.. 02/24/2017

   .PREV DISCUSSION... /ISSUED 0144 AM CST Fri Feb 24 2017/

   A mid-level low will deepen as it moves from the Missouri Valley to
   the Great Lakes through tonight. In tandem with this low, another
   shortwave trough dropping southward along the Pacific Northwest
   coast will help maintain broad cyclonic flow across much of the
   Southwest and southern Plains. 

   The surface pattern will feature high pressure building southward
   across much of the Plains states, as a cold front pushes southeast
   towards the Gulf Coast.

   ...Portions of the southern Plains and southern/central New
   Despite the passage of the aforementioned cold front, diurnal
   heating and downslope warming should still increase temperatures
   sufficiently for RH values to fall into the single digits and teens
   across much of New Mexico and southern/western Texas. Continued
   enhancement of west/southwesterly flow aloft will maintain gusty
   surface conditions as well, bolstering the fire-weather threat.
   Across parts of New Mexico and west Texas, sustained west winds
   around 20-30 mph and RH values below 10-15 percent will create
   critical fire-weather concerns. The ongoing critical area was
   contracted slightly across parts of west Texas (primarily the
   eastern portion of the LUB CWA), as weaker winds are expected near a
   trough axis oriented from northeast New Mexico southeastward to
   central Texas.

   Farther south, brief critical concerns may be realized across parts
   of the Texas Brush Country, as sustained northwesterly winds
   increase to around 15-20 mph amidst RH values below 15 percent.
   However, confidence in a sufficient duration of critical conditions
   remains too low for an upgrade at this time. Nonetheless, rapid
   fire-spread potential will exist here as well.

   ...Please see for graphic product...


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