Dry, windy and unseasonably hot conditions will set the stage for high wildfire danger across the High Plains on Monday. The elevated wildfire threat will then focus on Southern California at midweek.
Areas from Scottsbluff, Nebraska, to Colorado Springs, Colorado, and Amarillo, Texas, are expected to be at greatest risk for new fires to ignite at the start of the workweek.
"Widespread high wind gusts in excess of 30 to 40 mph, in combination with low relative humidity will lead to a high fire danger across the High Plains," according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Kevin Gilmore.
Winds are expected to howl across much of Wyoming, western Nebraska, Colorado, New Mexico and the Texas Panhandle throughout the day.
Gusts past 50 mph are expected across the mountainous terrain.
The gusty winds will quickly fan any fires that are sparked, threatening to put residents and property in danger.
Cigarettes and matches should be properly discarded and cars should not be parked over dry brush to avoid sparking a wildfire.
Unseasonably hot conditions will heighten the fire risk from Kansas on southward. Temperatures will reach 20 to 30 degrees Fahrenheit above average in this area.
"The high fire danger will diminish on Tuesday as gusty winds weaken across parts of western Nebraska and Kansas, southward to the Oklahoma and Texas panhandles," Gilmore explained.
In addition to the subsiding winds, temperatures are expected to return to more seasonable levels on Tuesday.
Wildfire threat to shift to Southern California by midweek
Beyond Monday, the elevated threat for wildfires will shift to Southern California for the remainder of the week.
An area of high pressure will move over the Great Basin, causing Santa Ana winds to return to Southern California.
The gusty northeasterly winds will result in hot and extremely dry conditions from San Diego to Los Angeles on Wednesday and Thursday.
Wildfires can quickly spread across the mountains, valleys and canyons as the winds whip through the region.
CAL FIRE reported that additional firefighters and resources will be made available during the event.
There are currently no major wildfires burning across Southern California, but residents should ensure that proper steps are taken throughout the week to prevent a wildfire disaster.