Red flag fire warning issued for Valley for Wednesday

A cold front sweeping south on Wednesday will bring critical fire conditions to the Rio Grande Valley, with humidity levels plummeting as heavy northwest winds whip the region.

A Red Flag Warning has been issued for the entire Rio Grande Valley and most of South Texas between the hours of 10 a.m. and 8 p.m. Wednesday. Winds will be out of the northwest at 15 to 25 mph.

The critical fire danger this week is a continuation of conditions that have plagued the state this month.

Already in March state and local agencies have responded to more than 700 wildfires that burned 164,257 acres across the state.

Only two, however, have occurred in South Texas, the 11,182-acre Hayfield South fire in Kenedy County and the 1,058-acre Miller fire in Jim Hogg County. Both have been contained.

But if anything, conditions this week are shaping up to create a particularly volatile wildfire situation.

Texas A&M Forest Service is monitoring conditions and and has positioned personnel and equipment in areas of concern.

“State, local and federal firefighters have been extremely busy responding to increased wildfire activity,” said Rich Gray, Texas A&M Forest Service chief regional fire coordinator. “Fire resources are mobilized to areas of concern for a quick and effective response to any requests for assistance.”

Fully staffed task forces and additional suppression equipment are already staging in 17 cities across the state, including Edinburg.