KSN Storm Track 3 Digital Extra: Kansas’ high fire danger factors in an ongoing drought

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Temperatures for the month of November in Wichita have averaged well above the norm. As for rainfall? It’s been pitiful. We have only picked up around 0.15″ of rain. November is not a wet month by any means. But, we are below average not only for November, but the fall season and the year to this point. Now we are in the boat of having to police warm, windy and dry days for the potential for wildfires.

Look at our latest drought monitor. Most of the state is experiencing one degree or another of drought. It is still the worst along the Kansas/Colorado state line.

Right now, winds are in the process of picking up and will amplify by dawn. This just dries us out further. I cannot stress this enough, please do not burn Wednesday! Don’t be the spark that sets a grassfire!

Fire Weather Watches have been posted for central and eastern Kansas tomorrow from 11 AM to 6 PM. Relative humidity levels will drop to the teens out west and range between 20-40% for central and eastern communities during the afternoon.  This is something to keep a close eye on through Thursday as well before winds start to drop. 

Gusts on Wednesday will approach 50 MPH, especially in central and eastern Kansas which is why a Wind Advisory will go into effect from 11 AM to 6 PM. 

Temps will be unseasonably warm during our afternoons for the remainder of the work week and into Saturday before our next cold front slides through the region. 

Highs will warm into the 70s with isolated 80s out west through the end of the work week.  Record high temperatures could be in jeopardy.  

Changes start to move in this weekend.  Showers will blossom over Nebraska and slowly sag southward. 

The bulk of the moisture moves in Saturday night into Sunday morning.  Temps will be warm enough to support rain.  At the end of this event, a few snowflakes could mix to the northwest.  Widespread rainfall amounts from 0.10″ to 0.50″ are possible.  Select locations will be able to pick up 1″ – 1.5″ of rain.   

This rain will be a welcomed sight, but it will not erase our drought. Our weather pattern going forward continues to promote dry and warmer than average conditions. Coming up this Sunday on KSN News 3 after Sunday Night Football, we will take a look at where our winter is heading in Kansas.

-Chief Meteorologist Lisa Teachman

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