(BIVN) – The National Weather Service in Honolulu has issued a Red Flag Warning for leeward portions of all Hawaiian islands, which is in effect from 10 a.m. this morning to 6 p.m. HST Sunday.
“A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now or will shortly,” forecasters say. “A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity, and warm temperatures can contribute to extreme fire behavior. A Red Flag Warning does not predict new fire starts.”
Any fires that develop will likely spread rapidly, forecasters say. Trade winds of 20 to 25 mph with gusts up to 35 mph are predicted, while humidity will be at 40% to 45% percent through the afternoon hours.
According to the Hawaiʻi County Fire Department, all mauka areas on the western half of the Island are experiencing hazardous fuel loads of dry brush conducive to wildfires. In a news release, Fire Chief Darren Rosario asked for the public’s assistance in minimizing wildfire risk in all areas. “Please keep vehicles on paved roadways, do not start campfires, do not smoke, and do not use spark-producing equipment in these high-risk areas,” the County stated.