The high winds and low humidity on Long Island and across the tri-state area have prompted the NWS to issue a Red Flag Warning for the entire tri-state area, which will stay in effect until 10 PM this evening. High winds of 15 - 25 MPH with gusts of up to 40 MPH are to be expected throughout the day, diminishing in the evening. The humidity in the area is expected to stay low, bottoming out around 11% - a combination that is ideal for fire spread, should ignition occur. According to the NOAA NWS Storm Prediction Center, the Fire Weather Outlook for Long Island is Critical - an escalation from yesterday's Outlook.
The NWS also warns that humans are the leading cause of fires in our area, and asks smokers to take extra care to extinguish cigarettes and cigars completely - rapid fire spread is possible, due to these unusual weather conditions. They also urge locals to report any smoke plumes to the authorities immediately, as the consequences could be severe. Earlier this afternoon, a massive brush fire in Berkley, NJ, caused evacuation of homes, schools, and public building across the area. According to Patch, the fire is still ablaze, and officials are working on controlling the fire, although the high winds are hindering the firefight.
Just as the Red Flag Warning ends, another Advisory will go into effect for parts of Long Island yet again - this time, for a drastic drop in temperature. At 3 AM tomorrow morning, a Freeze Advisory will go into effect for Western Suffolk County, as temperatures are expected to drop down into the mid-30s until later on in the morning. The Advisory will stay in effect until 9 AM. In Eastern Suffolk, a Freeze Warning will be going into effect during the same time period. Temperatures of between 25 and 30 degrees are expected in the Pine Barrens Region, and within the low 30s elsewhere on the East End. According to the latest NWS report, from Southold & East Hampton to Orient Point & Montauk Point should stay above freezing.
The NWS advises locals to bring sensitive outdoor plants indoors, as the extreme temperature drop may damage or kill flowers and plants. On the East End, there is also the potential for crop damage, and temperatures will be even lower.
For the most up to date weather information, head over to the LongIsland.com Weather Center, where you can find the latest weather forecasts, advisories and more.
Photo via the NWS NY Official Facebook Page.