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Summer-like temps this week bring increased fire risk

An outside fire between Bay and Grandview Roads, east of Blaine Road (July 14, 2017). Photo: My Ferndale News

National Weather Service forecasters in Seattle say to prepare for unseasonably warmer high temperatures beginning later this week. “Temperatures will rise into the 80s for most places [in western Washington] Thursday and Friday due to the combination of offshore flow and sunny skies.” The warm dry weather is expected to continue through the weekend.

Weather forecast as of May 6th.
Ferndale area weather forecast as of May 6, 2019. Source: Dark Sky

City of Ferndale Public Works crews have started operating the fountain at Centennial Riverwalk Park for the season and it will likely be a popular gathering place during this early summer weather.

This has been a drier than normal winter and spring so the forecasted spike in temperatures is putting firefighters on notice. Whatcom County Fire District 7 Fire Chief Larry Hoffman advises using extreme caution when burning outdoors this season, especially during this weather. “Make sure you are in an area where you are allowed to burn and have a water source nearby,” Hoffman said during a phone interview.

Hoffman was refering to the permanent burn ban in place within the Ferndale city limits and surrounding urban growth areas. Burning household yard waste (such as leaves, grass, brush and other yard trimmings) is illegal in those areas. Outside those areas, residents are allowed to burn dry yard and garden waste as long as the fire is contained within a 4-foot diameter space and does not exceed 3 feet in height.

Winds are not expected to exceed 10mph this week but, Hoffman pointed out, “10mph doesn’t seem like much until you are trying to control a fire being pushed at that speed.”

Keep current with the latest weather forecast on the MFN Weather page.

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