Wed: High Wind,Critical Fire Danger, Snow, Dust

Okiedawn OK Zone 7December 19, 2012

Today's weather has a smorgsabord of diverse types of potentially hazardous weather. What you'll see in your area will depend on where you are.

HIGH WINDS: High Winds are forecast for a large portion of the state, mostly in western areas but also as far east as some counties in central OK. These high winds will interact with other weather features. Some counties have a High Wind Warning while others have a High Wind Watch or a Wind Advisory. Blowing dust is a possibility in some areas, and blowing snow could be an issue in the areas that get snow.

CRITICAL FIRE WEATHER: Some portions of southwestern Oklahoma have a Red Flag Fire Warning in effect, although there is slight variation in the timing. In some areas it is in effect from noon to six p.m. and in others it is in effect from 1 to 7 p.m. Critical Fire Weather means that any fires that do start may exhibit extreme fire behavior, including very fast movement of wildfires.

SNOW/BLOWING SNOW: Some areas in northern Oklahoma may receive snow this afternoon or evening. If you also have high wind once the snow is falling, you could have blowing snow.

RAIN? Some areas have at least a slight chance of rain. Let's hope they get it.

I've linked the webpage of the NWS's Norman Weather Office below. If you click on that link, you will find graphics at the top of the page, and a county map at the bottom. Click on any county on the county map and you'll be able to see their forecast as well as a list of applicable weather watches, warnings, advisories, Special Weather Statements, etc. To read the text of those products, click on the link on the county page.

Finally, be aware that these watches, warnings and advisories can change at any time if conditions warrant. Often, if the wind is stronger than expected or the humidity drops lower than expected, you'll see Red Flag Fire Warnings abruptly extended into new counties. The same thing can happen with the forecasts for high wind, snow, etc.

If your ground and your plant roots are dry, don't forget to water before the coming cold front arrives today, tonight or tomorrow depending on your location. The roots of trees, shrubs, perennials, ground covers, etc. are more likely to suffer freeze injury if they are dry so make sure they are moist to protect them. They don't have to be (and shouldn't be) soggy wet, but merely moist.


Here is a link that might be useful: NWS Norman Weather Office Website

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It's always windy here but this is the first time I've ever seen the forecast as "blowing dust". It's a little creepy after watching the Dust Bowl documentary.


    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 2:26PM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7

I was thinking of you specifically when I linked this because y'all seem so likely to have blowing dust even if the rest of it misses you. It is creepy to see "Blowing Dust" as an official forecast. We get that sort of forecast here in Love County maybe once or twice a year, but most often in early spring more so than in early winter. With so little rainfall this fall and winter so far to hold down the soil, I think we may see "blowing dust" a lot more often this winter.

This wind here has been increasing in speed the last couple of hours, but we aren't supposed to have really strong wind arrive here until late afternoon or early evening. I'm watering the yard with sprinklers that keep the water down really low so the water (or, for that matter, the surface soil) doesn't blow away.

I'm not sure I remember the last time we had to worry about wind gusting in the 50s or around 60 mph in some areas of the state in December. March? Sure, but it seems crazy for December.

I don't mind the wind so much when the humidity is fairly high or the grass is green. It bothers me a little more when all the vegetation is dry and dormant and the humidity is low.

    Bookmark   December 19, 2012 at 2:36PM
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