LOCAL NEWS

Fire, wind and heat warnings issued for much of Utah

Jun 16, 2022, 5:03 PM | Updated: 5:45 pm
red flag warning Utah...
Weather warnings from the NWS's Salt Lake Office. (NWS)
(NWS)

SALT LAKE CITY — As temperatures jumped significantly from Wednesday to Thursday, weather warnings were issued for high wind, excessive heat and high fire danger, for Friday and Saturday.

RED FLAG WARNING

The National Weather Service’s Salt Lake City office issued a red-flag warning, indicating urgent fire weather conditions that signal any fire that starts could spread rapidly. The warning indicates a combination of strong winds and low humidity and hot temperatures that “can contribute to extreme fire behavior.”

NWS said:

“A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now…or are imminent. A combination of strong winds…low relative humidity…and warm temperatures can contribute to extreme fire behavior.

The red flag warning is in place for Utah’s color country mountains and the Grand Staircase area. Isolated dry thunderstorms are possible along the eastern portions of the canyon country mountains, according to NWS, creating critical fire conditions.”

Winds are expected in the 20 to 30 mph range with gusts up to 55 mph, possibly spreading any fires quickly. Relative humidity is in the 7% to 13% range. The red flag warning is in place through 10 p.m. Friday.

HIGH WIND WARNING

NWS also issued a high wind warning from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday for the Great Salt Lake desert and mountains, Tooele and Rush valleys, western Millard and Juab counties and southwest Utah. That covers most of the western part of Utah, bumping into the red flag warning that covers the bottom two thirds of the state.

Winds are expected to decrease Friday night and resume in daylight Saturday. NWS said:

High winds may move loose debris, damage property and cause power outages. Travel will be difficult especially for high profile vehicles including I-80 from Wendover to Salt Lake City and US-50 from the Nevada border to Delta.

Winds will range from 30 to 40 mph with gusts up to 65 mph expected. People are urged to secure loose objects that could be blown around or cause damage with the wind. NWS also warns areas of blowing dust are expected across the area and could suddenly and significantly reduce visibility in some locations, including areas along Interstate 15 and Interstate 80.

NWS said:

If dense dust is observed blowing across or approaching the roadway, pull your vehicle off the pavement as far as possible,
stop, turn off lights and set the emergency brake. Do not keep your foot on the brake as this will illuminate tail lights. If you cannot leave the roadway, proceed at a lower speed and turn on lights.

EXCESSIVE HEAT WARNING

While much of the state is hot, an excessive heat warning was issued for conditions Thursday in the Lake Powell area, with temperatures ranging up to 105 degrees through the evening. The warning includes Marble and Glen Canyons, including the cities of Page and Lees Ferry.

According to NWS, extreme heat will significantly increase the potential for heat-related illnesses, especially for people working outdoors or participating in outdoor activities.

NWS said:

Drink plenty of fluids, stay in an air-conditioned room, stay out of the sun, and check up on relatives and neighbors. Young
children and pets should never be left unattended in vehicles under any circumstances.

Take extra precautions if you work or spend time outside. When possible reschedule strenuous activities to early morning or evening. Know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Wear lightweight and loose fitting clothing when possible. To reduce risk during outdoor work, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recommends scheduling frequent rest breaks in shaded or air conditioned environments. Anyone overcome by heat should be moved to a cool and shaded location. Heat stroke is an emergency! Call 9 1 1.

For more information visit weather.gov/slc/.

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Fire, wind and heat warnings issued for much of Utah