UPDATE 11 P.M. TUESDAY—The Red Flag Warning for Dakota County and the rest of Minnesota has expired.
The National Weather Service in Chanhassen is forecasting a big change in weather conditons for Wednesday, which is expected to reduce the fire danger. After Tuesday saw high temperatures in the 90s and gusty winds, the high for Wednesday is predicted to be 68 under mostly cloudy skies.
Apple Valley's temperature at 11 p.m. Tuesday stood at 81 degrees.
Sunny and mild conditions are expected for the rest of the work week, with a high on Thursday expected to be 73, followed by a high on Friday of 69.
The National Weather Service on Tuesday expanded its Red Flag Warning for what it calls “critical fire weather conditions” deeper into southern Minnesota.
Dakota County is among most counties in the southern two-thirds of the state under the warning. Three counties in the southeast corner of the state are excluded.
Here is the text of the updated Red Flag Warning, issued at 10:31 a.m. Tuesday:
RED FLAG WARNING ACROSS CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN MINNESOTA CONTINUES INTO THIS EVENING....VERY WARM AND DRY AIR WILL BE IN PLACE ACROSS CENTRAL AND SOUTHERN MINNESOTA TODAY AHEAD OF AN APPROACHING COLD FRONT. STRONG SOUTH SOUTHWEST WINDS OF 25 TO 40 MPH WILL COMBINE WITH WARM TEMPERATURES AND LOW DEWPOINTS TO YIELD RELATIVE HUMIDITY VALUES TO BETWEEN 20 AND 25 PERCENT. THIS WILL CONTINUE TO CREATE DANGEROUS FIRE WEATHER CONDITIONS ACROSS MOST OF SOUTHERN AND CENTRAL MINNESOTA TODAY.
THE COLD FRONT WILL ENTER WESTERN MINNESOTA THIS AFTERNOON. THE ARRIVAL OF THE FRONT WILL DECREASE WINDS SOMEWHAT IN WEST CENTRAL MINNESOTA DURING THE AFTERNOON.
The weather service is calling for a high temperature of near 90 in Apple Valley and Rosemount on Tuesday, with winds gusting up to 31 miles per hour. Tonight’s low is expected to be 63, under partly cloudy skies.
Weather conditions are expected to change dramatically on Wednesday, with mostly cloudy skies and a high of 67.
Click here for the latest forecast.
FIRE DANGER RATING
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources on Tuesday increased the fire danger rating of most of the Twin Cities metro area from “high” to “extreme,” meaning “the fire situation is explosive and can result in extensive property damage.”
Dakota County’s fire rating was jumped from “high” to “very high,” which is one notch below "extreme.” Under very high conditions, says the DNR, “fires start very easily and spread at a very fast rate.”
Click here for fire danger risk and burning restriction maps.
To read the original story about Dakota County’s Red Flag Warning, click on the headline below: