Elevated fire risk Friday, T-storms possible

Friday, March 14th 2008, 9:49 am
By: News 9

By Carrie Rose, NEWS 9 Weather Team

Warm afternoon temperatures in the low 80s, gusty winds from the Southwest, and dry conditions are creating high fire danger conditions across southwest and west-central Oklahoma Friday. 

A Red Flag Warning will be in effect until 8 p.m. Friday night, when there is the highest threat for rapid spread of wildfires. 

Winds will increase this afternoon up to 30 mph in the region, with gusts around 45 mph. 

Elevated fire risk will continue through Saturday in Oklahoma, with thunderstorms possible in primarily the eastern half of the state. 

On the heels of a warm, spring-like week, spring-time severe weather is set to return to the state. 

Strong winds sustained at 20 to 40 mph will race in from the South on Sunday as a storm system approaches Oklahoma from the west.  When this system moves through the region, there will be a good chance for showers and thunderstorms, some of which could be severe Monday through Wednesday. 

The first half of the work week will also continue to be quite windy in the 15 to 30 mph range. 

By mid-week, the storm system will move east of Oklahoma, taking the threat of storms with it.  As it progresses through the eastern U.S., the risk for heavy rain and flooding will increase through a region already dealing with flooding in recent weeks.  However, this rain will still be a welcome relief for the drought-stricken Southeast, which is struggling to escape the grips of its worst drought on record.