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‘Extreme’ Warning For Texas At U.S. Border

Source: X/GregAbbott_TX

One massive problem with the American borders is how often undocumented immigrants try to cross them. But for now, the biggest problem to worry about is Mother Nature, especially on the Texas side of the border.

Essentially, there was recent news from the National Weather Service (NWS) warning of “extreme” weather conditions. This potential disaster will take place at the far western Texas border this Wednesday.

What’s The Emergency?

The news from the National Weather Service said the weather will be so bad that it’ll most likely cause extreme fires. The condition will begin on Wednesday and possibly escalate to its peak on Thursday.

Source: X/TamFromCanada

To ensure maximum safety, the agency has already issued red flag warnings. Therefore, people in the El Paso, Texas region should get ready for the strong weather pressure coming from Colorado.

Strong Winds, Low Humidity, And High Temperatures Are To Blame

What could possibly cause this weather phenomenon that could result in extreme fires? The culprit? Experts blame strong winds, low humidity, and high temperatures. These are usually the reasons behind a red flag warning.

Source: X/RadarOmega

Regardless of the reason, the agency informed three states about the impending doom. This should give everyone plenty of time to protect themselves and their properties.

How Do These Conditions Cause Extreme Fires?

The NWS said that strong winds, low humidity, and high temperatures are to blame for the coming trouble. But how? Well, strong winds carry a rich supply that feeds the fires caused by low humidity and heat.

Source: X/OKForestService

Essentially, low humidity means the air and surrounding areas are very dry. This dryness, especially on plants, makes them more flammable. So, combine these factors together and you have all you need for catastrophic fires.

Weather Report From the NWS

Based on the NWS reports: “West-southwest winds with sustained speeds of 30 to 40 mph and peak gusts around 55 mph combined with very low relative humidity values will lead to critical fire weather conditions and the risk of rapid fire start and spread through much of the daytime hours Thursday.”

Source: X/TXMilitary

They continued: “Fuel moisture had dried rapidly this month, especially along the desert lowlands, due to preexisting drought status and lack of recent precipitation. Winds subsided overnight into Friday morning, likely picking back up again Friday and Saturday afternoons.”

In Other Words…

The NWS report basically predicts wind speeds near 60 mph. For context, average wind speeds for a normal day ranges between 13 to 18 mph. This amount is more than enough to fan any little flame that develops.

Source: X/mikeonthehills

The possibility of flame is even higher now as the NWS explains that the area has been in drought due to the lack of rainfall. Fortunately, while the winds will peak on Thursday, they’ll drop on Friday and then increase slightly on Saturday.

El Paso May Get Hit The Hardest

While the extreme weather conditions will affect three states, Texas will get hit the hardest. More precisely, El Paso, Texas. This opinion came from NWS meteorologist Luke Rogers who pointed out that that area has an average temperature in the mid-80s.

Source: X/mikeonthehills

According to Luke Rogers: “Being in the desert southwest, it’s very, very dry, so our concerns with regards to tomorrow are the very dry humidity values.” 

Another Reason Texas Will Suffer

Rogers also pointed out that the winter conditions in the past few months supplied moisture to the vegetation in the area. However, as the weather changed, the moisture evaporated, leaving tall but dried grass.

Source: X/mikeonthehills

Rogers calls these grass “fuel” as they will continue any little fire the heavy winds and heat ignite. 

What’s A Red Flag Warning?

The NWS issued red flag warnings to three states, especially El Paso, Texas. But what does this mean? The NWS explained that this means that weather conditions that could cause serious fires are coming.

Source: X/WXMinh

So, when people see the warning, they can expect a combination of factors like warmer temperatures, stronger winds, and lower humidity.

Fire Isn’t The Only Problem

The warning placed a lot of emphasis on fires possibly because they’re the worst case scenario in this situation. However, Rogers also points out that heavy air pollution from dust is another problem.

Source: X/CarrolltonTX

This is a no-brainer considering the wind speed will be close to 60 mph. So, besides preventing fires, people in Texas should also barricade their homes to avoid breathing issues.

Up To 10 States Were Warned Too

Texas and its neighboring states are the main target of this NWS warning. However, they also alerted other states as well. These areas were in the U.S. Northeast and were notified of the same condition.

Source: X/RehabVisions

However, unlike in El Paso, these places weren’t given a red flag warning. Theirs was merely a notification telling them to limit fires. But even if fires do start, the region retains a lot of moisture, so the damage will be less.

These Weather Conditions Are Very Common In Texas

The recent NWs warning isn’t the first of its kind. In reality, Texas has experienced these wildfires quite often. One good example is the Smokehouse Creek fire which happened in Hutchinson County, Texas.

Source: X/Sierra_Lindsey3

It burned for over 1.2 million acres and was caused by warm temperatures and high wind speeds. It’s also worth noting that most of Texas’s wildfires happen between January and May.

Global Warming Is To Blame For The Increased Fires

But why is the area more prone to fires now? The answer is global warming. This conclusion comes from a 2021 report by Texas state climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon. 

Source: X/Sierra_Lindsey3

He made his analysis and concluded that Texas should expect more fires as global warming brings in drier conditions. He also predicted that the fires will expand eastward as fuel is drier in such areas.

Texas Will Survive

Texas is no stranger to red flag warnings. They have different protocols like avoiding leaving fires open, protecting their crops, barricading their homes, and more. The state will survive the coming storm possibly with minimal damage.

Source: X/TheMacroGrid

However, the Smokehouse Creek fire shows what a lack of preparation can do. So, to come out unscathed, Texas must heed NWS warnings and follow their direction.

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Mary Scrantin

Written by Mary Scrantin

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