Red Flag Warning issued for Cobb County due to critical fire danger conditions

A flame on a red flag plus the Cobb County Courier logo

The National Weather Service issued a red flag warning for Cobb County and other counties in the region for Wednesday, November 1, from noon to 8 p.m. due to critical conditions for the spread of fire.

What is in the statement?

The statement gives the following details:

…RED FLAG WARNING IN EFFECT FROM NOON TODAY TO 8 PM EDT THIS

EVENING FOR LOW RELATIVE HUMIDITIES ACROSS NORTH AND PORTIONS OF

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CENTRAL GEORGIA…

The National Weather Service in Peachtree City has issued a Red

Flag Warning for low relative humidities, which is in effect from

noon today to 8 PM EDT this evening. The Fire Weather Watch is no

longer in effect.

* Affected Area…North and portions of Central Georgia.

* Timing…Late Wednesday morning through Wednesday evening.

* Winds…Northwest at 10 to 15 mph with gusts near 25 mph.

* Relative Humidity…Minimum relative humidity values between 20

  and 25 percent.

* Impacts…Due to low humidity and breezy winds, in addition to

  dry fuels and ongoing significant drought conditions, any fires

  that develop will likely spread rapidly. Outdoor burning is not

  recommended.

What is a Red Flag Warning?

The National Weather Service issues a Red Flag Warning when the conditions for fire are either critical or are expected to become critical within the next 24 hours.

Why does low relative humidity increase the danger of fire?

The National Park Service published the following explanation of why low relative humidity increases the danger of fires:

“Relative humidity is important because dead forest fuels and the air are always exchanging moisture. Low humidity takes moisture from the fuels, and fuels in turn, take moisture from the air when the humidity is high. 

“Light fuels, such as grass and pine needles, gain and lose moisture quickly with changes in relative humidity. When the RH drops, fire behavior increases because these fine fuels become drier. 

“Heavy fuels, on the other hand, respond to humidity changes more slowly. To see significant changes in heavy fuel moisture, there must be significant moisture, usually from more than a single storm.”

What counties are affected?

The following counties are included in the hazardous weather outlook:

Baldwin, Barrow, Bartow, Bibb, Bleckley, Butts, Carroll, Catoosa, Chattahoochee, Chattooga, Cherokee, Clarke, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, Crawford, Crisp, Dade, Dawson, DeKalb, Dodge, Dooly, Douglas, Fannin, Fayette, Floyd, Forsyth, Gilmer, Gordon, Gwinnett, Hall, Haralson, Harris, Heard, Henry, Houston, Jackson, Jasper, Jones, Lamar, Laurens, Lumpkin, Macon, Marion, Meriwether, Monroe, Morgan, Murray, Muscogee, Newton, North Fulton, Oconee, Paulding, Peach, Pickens, Pike, Polk, Pulaski, Putnam, Rockdale, Schley, South Fulton, Spalding, Stewart, Sumter, Talbot, Taylor, Telfair, Towns, Troup, Twiggs, Union, Upson, Walker, Walton, Webster, White, Whitfield, Wilcox, Wilkinson

What precautions should be taken?

The National Weather Service recommends extreme caution if you do outdoor burning during high fire danger conditions, and that you check your local fire ordinances.

>> To read a summary of Cobb County’s fire ordinances follow this link

About the National Weather Service

The National Weather Service (NWS) is a part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The NWS describes its role as follows:

“The National Weather Service (NWS) provides weather, water, and climate forecasts and warnings for the United States, its territories, adjacent waters and ocean areas, for the protection of life and property and the enhancement of the national economy. 

“These services include Forecasts and Observations, Warnings, Impact-based Decision Support Services, and Education in an effort to build a Weather-Ready Nation. 

“The ultimate goal is to have a society that is prepared for and responds to weather, water and climate events.”

Read all the Cobb County Courier climate and weather coverage by following this link.

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