EPHRATA - The National Weather Service has issued a Fire Weather Watch for the Columbia Basin.
Ephrata Fire Chief Jeremy Burns says it keeps his staff on high alert.
"These are issued from the National Weather Service to notify fire departments and area agencies of weather events that could produce rapid fire growth with the onset of fire. These weather events come with high winds sustaining averages of above 20 mph and relative humidities that are below 25%. What we do during this time is notify our firefighters and look to provide staffing for fire stations to be prepared for rapid fire growth if there is an onset of a fire," Burns said in 2018.
Meteorologists at the National Weather Service say Gusty winds and low visibility are expected on Thursday afternoon, with strong sustained winds and low relative humidities will promote rapid fire spread of existing fires and any new fire starts.
The Fire Weather Watch is in effect from Thursday afternoon to Thursday evening.
Winds are expected to increase to as fast as 35 mph.