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No recovery of humidity overnight is a primary factor of rapid fire growth

Published: Aug. 12, 2020 at 11:26 AM MDT
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - One of the Incident Command Centers for the Pine Gulch Fire is set up at the Mesa County Fairgrounds.

Part of the crew managing operations is a meteorologist. They’re responsible for forecasting up to the hour or for the next week to help firefighters with their management plan. All weather models are available to inform those managing the fire and for those on the front lines. Sometimes relief comes when the sun sets but because of just how dry it is, there has been no benefit of late-night or early morning humidity.

“We are not seeing that at all. We’re barely getting up to 20 percent recovery in relative humidities so that’s kind of why we’re seeing the fire activity because those fuels have no relief over the nighttime period, they’re just staying dry,” says Lisa Kriedermen, the Incident Meteorologist of the Pine Gulch Fire.

According to date readings, this area of western Colorado is seeing some of the driest moisture levels on record.

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