Hundreds of Lightning Strikes Setting Stages For Wildfire Starts

Posted at 6:05 PM, Jul 23, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-23 20:25:10-04

A FIRE WEATHER WATCH has been issued for much of central Montana for Wednesday.  Thunderstorms rumbling through the state on Tuesday evening have already started several small wildfires despite heavy rain falling as well.  Multiple fire agencies have responded to small blazes.  This coming after small wildfires sparked by lightning in the Flathead and Bitterroot Valleys on Monday night.  Thunderstorms will continue into the night, with more fire starts possible.  Red flag warning conditions will likely be met on Wednesday as the wind increases and the humidity decreases.  Any smoldering spots from lightning strikes could be ignited in Wednesday’s fire weather conditions.  Humidity will range from 12-25%, wind will gust up to around 50mph, and temperatures will be in the 80s and 90s.  Thursday and Friday will be sunny, warm, dry and breezy days as well where new wildfires could exhibit growth.  An isolated thunderstorm is possible on Saturday, but elevated fire danger will continue this weekend with continued dry, breezy and warm weather.  Fire season is upon us for real now.

Curtis Grevenitz

Chief Meteorologist