The National Weather Service and the Oklahoma Forestry Services have both issued red flag fire danger warnings at least through this weekend.
David Ball, the Logan County Emergency Manager told the News Leader, “Winds on Tuesday were recorded at 40 miles per hour in Guthrie and 47 miles per hour in Marshall.” Guthrie Fire Chief Eric Harlow has removed the burn ban in Guthrie due to all of the moisture the area has received but is cautioning residents to be aware of wind conditions over the next four days. Guthrie Fire Department responded to four grass fires on Tuesday alone when winds were recorded at 39.91 miles an hour on the Mesonet weather station. One of the tougher fires was a three-acre fire at Liberty Lake where fire departments from Oak Cliff, Coyle, Deer Creek and Crescent assisted the Guthrie Fire Department along with a bulldozer from Logan County District #3. The fire was in a ravine and in the trees where the brush was very dense and made access to the fire difficult. Logan County Sheriff’s Office also responded and provided traffic control along Seward Road while the fire was being dealt with. Guthrie also responded to fires at Chestnut and University, County Road 73 and Henney Road; and Beemer Road and Highway 77. Those three fires blackened approximately 37 acres all together. Coyle and Langston Fire Department provided mutual aid to these fires as well. Harlow reported that he also had to call an extra seven firefighters in on their off days to help with the fires.
The Oklahoma Forestry Services is urging Oklahomans to be aware that critical fire weather will be present across the state and is asking residents to avoid outdoor burning until conditions improve. The forestry service has indicated they will continue to monitor immediate weather conditions, as well as, long-term weather forecasts, the condition of wildland fuels, current fire behavior and fire occurrences on a daily basis.
“We are asking Oklahomans to pay close attention to the fire weather forecast over the next few days,” said George Geissler, Oklahoma State Forester. “For the safety of our citizens and our state’s firefighters, we are advising people to avoid outdoor burning until conditions improve.” Logan County and Guthrie are not under burn bans but residents are advised to call your local fire department before any controlled burns are started.