Parts of the Valley Under Red Flag Warning

By: Brendan Ponton Email
By: Brendan Ponton Email

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ROCKINGHAM COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) -- A red flag warning is currently in effect in parts of the Valley.

In simple terms, because of the conditions outside, wildfires can start easily Wednesday and spread rapidly. Something as small as a cigarette could end up leading to damage in the forest.

Some area fire crews are worried about wooded areas. At this point in spring, a lot of these trees haven't greened yet, and don't have leaves on them, which could lead to an easier spread for wildfire.

The wind is also enhancing the threat for wildfires in Rockingham County, but anywhere could theoretically catch on fire.

Spring time is wildfire season as the winds usually dry out moisture pretty quickly and even though it seems there was a lot of snow this past winter, the threat still looms.

"This winter we were really hoping that the wet winter and the wet early spring that we've had would help out a lot, but with that we had a lot of snow, and a lot of moisture, but with the drying out in between those periods, we've run a lot of fires because it would dry out so quickly with the winds," said Justin Barnes with the Virginia Department of Forestry.

In addition to this enhanced threat for a wildfires, there is also a law that is in effect until the end of the month that prohibits burning things in the open until after 4 p.m.; however, fire crews say that on days like Wednesday, it's best not to burn anything at all.


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