ROCKINGHAM — Richmond County residents are discouraged from otudoor burning due to dry and windy conditions.
The National Weather Service on Saturday issued a red flag warning until 9 p.m. Saturday, noting:
“Westerly winds between 15 and 25 mph, with gusts between 30 and 40 mph, are expected from this afternoon. Additionally, minimum relative humidity values will decrease to between 15 and 25 percent. High fire danger will result.”
The warning covers most of North Carolina and Georgia and nearly all of South Carolina.
Winds on Sunday are expected to be 9-14 mph in the morning hours, with gusts up to 23 mph, and calming down into the night.
Current forecasts show no rain is expected until Thursday.
According to the N.C. Forest Service, “careless debris burning” is the leading cause of wildfires in the state.
The N.C. Public Wildfire Viewer shows a fire burned a half acre in the northern end on the county between N.C. 73 and Rummage Packhouse Road.
On March 20, 76 wildfires burned 623.3 acres of private and state-owned land, according to the NCFS. Region D3, which includes Richmond, saw more than 120 acres burned from five fires.
There have been 979 wildfires statewide this month and 2231 this year, according to the Forest Service.