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Elevated Grassland/Field Fire Danger today! (10/16)

News, Weather

October 16th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

Area Counties: Sac-Crawford-Carroll-Audubon-Guthrie-Dallas-Cass-Adair-Madison-Adams-Union-Taylor and Ringgold

...Elevated Fire Danger Again Today

Gusty west to northwest winds of 15 to 25 mph with wind gusts in excess of 40 mph will develop later this morning and persist through this evening. Relative humidity values will fall into the
25 to 35 percent range by this afternoon. These weather conditions combined with curing grasses and the crop harvest across the state will lead to an elevated fire danger today. Any fires that ignite could spread quickly under these conditions especially in cropland. Burning is not recommended under these conditions.

Weather service winter outlook has equal chance of warm or cold for Iowa

News, Weather

October 15th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – The National Weather Service released its annual winter outlook this (Thursday) morning with defined outlooks for either warm and dry or cold and wet conditions going into the winter season. But Climate Prediction Center Deputy Director Mike Halpert says it gets a little bit more complicated when you look at the jetstream and its impact on Iowa.

“The Iowa, Wisconsin area oftentimes falls in between or becomes very uncertain as to whether they become drier as a drier signal as the jetstream shifts further north or becomes wetter as it doesn’t shift quite as far,” he says. “So the forecasts for Iowa are actually in the equal chance category so there’s an equal chance for wet or dry, warm or cold.”

Dave Miscus is a drought expert at the C-P-C. He says our temperatures over the next several months will likely dictate what we expect come spring as far as ongoing drought conditions go even if we do end up in a wetter than normal pattern. He says once the soil freezes in the wintertime the soil doesn’t get into the soil and then we have to wait until spring to get any soil moisture recharge.

Miscus says if the soil freezes soon before any more precipitation, we enter the winter waiting. “Not looking too good for removing that drought in especially western Iowa — which has been lingering for the last six to nine months here. We’ll have to wait and see what the spring brings,” Miscus says.

The outlook released Thursday has higher probabilities or colder and wetter conditions to our north along with drier and warmer conditions to the south, but nothing is definitive at this point, especially not knowing exactly how strong the developing La Nina pattern is going to be.

Freeze warning issued for some area counties from 1-a.m. to 10-a.m. Friday

Ag/Outdoor, Weather

October 15th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

Monona-Harrison-Shelby Counties
336 AM CDT Thu Oct 15 2020


The National Weather Service in Omaha/Valley has issued a Freeze Warning, which is in effect from 1 AM to 10 AM CDT Friday.

* TEMPERATURES…33 to 29 degrees .

* TIMING… 1 AM to 10 AM

* IMPACTS…Freezing temperatures could kill sensitive vegetation and damage unprotected outdoor plumbing.

* ADDITIONAL INFORMATION… We are now about a week past the typical growing season for the counties in the warning. This will the the last freeze warning of the season.


A Freeze Warning means sub-freezing temperatures are imminent or highly likely. These conditions will kill crops and other sensitive vegetation.

Burn Bans in effect for Adair and Guthrie Counties until further notice

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

October 14th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

A Burn Ban is now in effect for Guthrie and Adair Counties, until further notice. Emergency Management Coodinator Bob Kempf reports the State Fire Marshal approved requests from Kempf to prohibit open burning in both counties, until such time as the activity does not constitute a danger to life or property.

Kempf made the request after consulting with the fire chiefs in each respective county. Any violation of the proclamation order is a simple misdemeanor.

Red Flag warning in effect for Cass & area Counties from 1-pm today until 8-p.m. (10/14)

News, Weather

October 14th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

Critical Fire Danger Today…Strong winds NW @ 20-45 mph) and low relative humidity this afternoon will result in rapid spread of any fires that start, and the potential for uncontrollable fires.
343 AM CDT Wed Oct 14 2020; Area Counties: Cass-Audubon-Guthrie-Monona-Harrison-Shelby-Sac-Crawford and Carroll….


* Impacts…Any grassland and field fires that start this afternoon may spread rapidly and become uncontrollable.


A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now, or will shortly. A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity, and warm temperatures can
contribute to extreme fire behavior.


Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

October 14th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

[COUNCIL BLUFFS, IA, October 13, 2020] – Pottawattamie County Emergency Management Director Doug Reed, Tuesday, said “The current weather forecast and environmental conditions indicate a potential for very high to extreme fire behavior on Wednesday, October 14th through Saturday. This includes easy ignition potential and rapid fire spread. Conditions will slightly alleviate but remain high Thursday and Friday, degrading again on Saturday.”

Pott. County EMA

According to Reed, “Fire departments in Pottawattamie County have responded to two large cropland fires over the past week and ask for everyone’s compliance with the current Open Burning Ban. In addition, the Emergency Management Agency is asking all residents to discontinue the use of recreational fire pits, campfire rings, covered burn barrels, and any type of burning through the remainder of this week and weekend.”

“Pottawattamie County,” he said, “has seen the devastating effects of fire in extreme conditions, including firefighter injuries and loss of residential properties and other structures. We want to do everything we can to help prevent unnecessary injuries or devastating property losses from occurring.”

Violation of the existing burn ban, especially actions or negligence causing injury or property loss, can subject a person to citation or arrest for disobeying a burn ban, reckless use of fire, or other applicable statutes. For updated information on conditions you can find further information on the county’s social media, and web pages.

An Open Burning Ban will remain in place until environmental conditions improve.

Local 24-Hour Rainfall Totals at 7:00 am on Monday, October 12, 2020

Ag/Outdoor, Weather

October 12th, 2020 by Chris Parks

  • KJAN, Atlantic  .24″
  • 7 miles NNE of Atlantic  .26″
  • Anita  .18″
  • Massena  .09″
  • Avoca  .3″
  • Oakland  .4″
  • Neola  .6″
  • Irwin  .62″
  • Missouri Valley  .78″
  • Carroll  .61″
  • Red Oak  .19″
  • Villisca  .1″
  • Corning  .02″
  • Clarinda  .11″
  • Shenandoah  .15″

Sunday-Monday storm damage/incident report (from 10/11-12/20)


October 12th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

10:39-p.m.     56 mph wind gust 3 miles W. of Silver City (Public report)

10:45-p.m.     59 mph gust 2 miles N. of Tabor  (Public report)

10:52-p.m.     67 mph gust 8 miles W/SW of Sidney (DOT instrumentation report)

10:57-p.m.     1″ diameter tree limbs down 3 mile NW of Glenwood (Public)

11:09-p.m.     Thunderstorm wind gust 55 mph at Red Oak Airport (AWOS)

11:10-p.m.     Montgomery County EMA reports multiple trees, branches and power lines are down in Red Oak

11:11-p.m.     3″ diameter tree limbs broken in Essex. (Public)

11:15-p.m.     Thunderstorm wind gust 61 mph 5 miles NW of Shenandoah (AWOS)

11:39-p.m.     Thunderstorm wind gust 58 mph at the Clarinda Airport. (AWOS)

11:41-p.m.     60 mph gust in Breda (MesoNet)

12:07-a.m.     (10/12) – 50 mph gust recorded in Adel.

12:08-a.m.     Cass County Communications reports power outage in Cumberland (Outages also reported in Massena & Lewis)

12:10-a.m.     61 mph gusts in Bedford (MesoNet)



Multiple trees, branches & power lines down in Montgomery County

News, Weather

October 12th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

The Montgomery County Emergency Management Agency early this morning reports multiple trees, branches, power lines and other damage is being reported from strong winds that occurred Sunday night into early Monday morning. Officials advise you to “please use caution if you’re out driving and if you have damage on your property, ensure there is no power lines down amongst the tree damage.” In addition, the Iowa DOT reports IA Highway 48 NB/SB: Road blocked due to downed power lines from County Road J28 to County Road J20 (near Essex).

Photos via the Montgomery County EMA Facebook page

Report: Iowa’s derecho crop losses increase by more than 50%

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

October 10th, 2020 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Crop loss estimates from a rare wind storm that slammed Iowa in August have increased by more than 50%. The U.S. Department of Agriculture said Friday that the number of crop acres that Iowa farmers are unable to harvest has grown to 850,000 from estimates last month that 550,000 acres were lost because of the storm, known as a derecho.

FILE – In this Aug. 20, 2020 file photo, a cornfield damaged in the derecho earlier this month is seen on the Rod Pierce farm near Woodward, Iowa. Crop loss estimates from a rare wind storm that slammed Iowa in August have increased by more than 50%, a new report shows. The U.S. Department of Agriculture said Friday, Oct. 10 that the number of crop acres that Iowa farmers are unable to harvest has grown to 850,000 from estimates last month that 550,000 acres were lost because of the storm, known as a derecho. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall, File)

The Des Moines Register reports that the damage caused by winds of up to 140 mph was compounded in late summer with a drought that, at its peak, encompassed much of the state. The drought is again expanding after some September rainfall.