SPOKANE, Wash. — A Red Flag Warning has been issued for all of Central and Eastern Washington through Thursday as a mix of dry and windier conditions will elevate the fire danger to critical levels. This includes the Spokane, Pullman, Moses Lake and Omak areas.
The dry conditions aren't a surprise. Relative humidity will drop to as low as 8% in central Washington during the afternoon hours. That combined with gusty winds up to 20-30 mph will create a combination of ideal weather conditions for rapid wildfire growth.
This is extremely concerning for the active fires burning in Central Washington including the Burbank Fire near Yakima, the Varden Fire near Mazama, and the new 10,000-acre wildfire near Nespelem which ignited due to lightning Monday evening.
Extreme drought conditions and dry vegetation will also play a role in the fire danger. Dry grass, brush, and timber catch fire easier and spread fire more rapidly.
The increased wind are a result of a cold front that passed through on Wednesday. While this provided a bit of relief temperature wise, highs dropping from the upper 90s to near 90, the increased winds are not what the region wants to see.