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December 9, 2021
Oklahoma Prepares for Increasing Fire Danger
In anticipation of Friday’s record temperatures, an approaching dry cold front and persistent dryness across western and north-central parts of the state, Oklahoma Forestry Services is prepositioning some of its wildland firefighters and firefighting equipment in both Weatherford and Guthrie through the weekend.
OFS coordinates very closely with the National Weather Service to identify the specifics of forecast fire weather combined with wildland fuel assessments to accurately predict wildland fire behavior potential. Friday’s forecast will produce fire-effective weather over very dry fuels across western Oklahoma and the north-central counties. Large, damaging wildfires are possible in these areas over the next few days.
This weekend’s cold front will be followed by a very brief cool down with well-above normal temperatures again looming. The front is not expected to usher in any measurable precipitation and very dry conditions are expected Saturday through Monday.
“Placing our wildland task forces in the area of greatest concern means we are poised to respond quickly to any new fire starts working alongside local fire departments and first responders,” said Mark Goeller, State Forester and Director of Oklahoma Forestry Services. “We are also asking Oklahoman’s during this period of critical fire weather to prevent the start of wildfires.”
Burn bans are currently in effect for Cimarron, Coal, Jefferson and Texas Counties. For the latest burn ban information visit www.ag.ok.gov/divisions/forestry-services. Even if your county isn’t under a burn ban, outdoor burning is discouraged due to the extreme conditions.
About Oklahoma Forestry Services
Oklahoma Forestry Services, a division of the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food and Forestry, is committed to conserving, enhancing and protecting Oklahoma’s 12.5 million acres of forests and woodlands. Since 1925 Oklahoma Forestry Services has worked with individuals and communities throughout the state to create resilient landscapes, fire-adaptive communities and provide wildfire response. Headquartered in Oklahoma City, the division also has regional offices in Goldsby, Broken Bow, Wilburton and Tahlequah. For more information, visit http://www.ag.ok.gov/divisions/forestry-services