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Wildfire Risk

The quick change in weather could put us at a risk for fire danger.
When it comes to fire dangers, experts at the National Weather Service say they aren't really worried about wildfires the week of February 12.

Todd Lindley from the National Weather Service says, "the threat for wild land fire may gradually increase somewhat as we head through the middle and later parts of next week."

Lindley says we're seeing some similarities in weather patterns to the ones back in 2011, that burned more than 26,000 acres damaged several homes.

So, are we in store for a repeat?

Lindley says, "no we are not at all expecting anything like we saw in 2011.  The state of the grass across the panhandle is not as robust and as vunerable to fire as it was back in 2011."

Chief meteorologist John Harris says even though we aren't expecting as severe fires, he says the peak of wildfire season is still ahead of us, and we should always be aware.

Chief Meteorologist John Harris says, "March and April are very windy months for us. You know, people think of April as a month where we start to see the spring flowers and everything warming up, not so for the panhandle.  It can be a dusty, dirty, windy month and that's when the wildfires can really ramp up.  "

He says wind isn't the only factor in wildfires.

He tells us, "humidity is less than 15% and the wind speeds close to the ground are strong enough, basically over 20 mph."

He says we can help prevent wildfires by doing something as simple as not throwing cigarette butts out of a car window.

Chief Meteorologist John Harris tells us  parts of eastern New Mexico will be on a fire weather watch this Sunday.

He wants to remind folks to keep an eye on watches and warnings we may get in our area.
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