Update on wildfires in Oklahoma and Kansas

kansas oklahoma texas wildfires update map

Above: Satellite data from March 8 shows that there was much less heat detected by the satellite (the red dots) on the fires in the tri-state area of Kansas, Oklahoma, and the panhandle of Texas than in previous days.

The Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management reported on Wednesday that the NW Oklahoma Complex of Fires had significant growth during the previous 24 hours. The three fires in that complex are:

  • Starbuck (Beaver and Harper County in Oklahoma, plus, in Kansas, Meade, Comanche, Clark Counties) – 715,484 acres total in Oklahoma and Kansas;
  • Selman (Harper and Woodward County, Oklahoma) – 47,289 acres; and,
  • 283 Fire (Harper County, Oklahoma) – 71,168 acres

An Oklahoma Forest Service Type 3 Incident Management Team (IMT) has been assigned to the fires but an order has been placed for a Type 1 IMT, which is the largest and most highly qualified type of IMT.

More moderate weather conditions across the region on Thursday should slow the spread of the wildfires, with wind speeds in many areas that are less than 10 mph. However the relative humidities are in the teens in the western areas of Kansas, Oklahoma, and the northern panhandle of Texas.

Through the FEMA Fire Management Assistance Grant (FMAG) approved for the Northwest Oklahoma Complex of fires, local fire departments and other response agencies may be eligible for reimbursements for costs associated with emergency protective measures and firefighting activities.

The video, uploaded March 9, shows the view from an airliner of one of the fires in the Oklahoma/Kansas border area.

Author: Bill Gabbert

After working full time in wildland fire for 33 years, Bill Gabbert now writes about it from the Black Hills. Google+

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