Red flag warning for all of western Massachusetts Thursday

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RED FLAG WARNING: All of western Massachusetts from 9AM-8PM. Windy and dry conditions make for a high brush fire risk.

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Western Massachusetts is under a red flag warning much of the day due to the risk for brush fires.

The past couple of days we’ve had an extremely high risk of brush fires and a number of different factors have contributed to this.

First of all, vegetation has dried out, in part due to the dry weather, but also because some plants and the grass is still dormant from winter and hasn’t greened up yet.

Humidity levels have been low, which helps to dry things out more quickly and strong winds help further dry things out and spread any fires that start.

Last year was the wettest on record in western Massachusetts. January was dry and February was average for precipitation.

However, it’s been March that has dried us out. We had 2.51″ of precipitation in March, but we should have had 3.5″. This means we were down about 1″ of rain last month which has contributed to some of the dry conditions we have now. We also have not had a soaking rain in a few days and that’s why the ground is so dry.

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