Extreme fire danger is in place for the Flint Hills for the next 24 hours as a deep low pressure system develops Wednesday which will generate high winds area wide.
The National Weather Service in Topeka has issued a high wind warning in effect 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday with red flag warnings in effect noon to 9 p.m. for very strong southerly winds of 30 to 40 mph. Wind gusts up to 70 mph are expected and that could snap tree limbs, blow over power lines and make difficult driving conditions, especially along Interstate 70.
Couple that with very low relative humidity, as low as 14 percent in some spots, and it’s a perfect recipe to spark a wildfire. Those levels are expected to drop after 2 p.m. A few storms are possible late Wednesday evening as well.
Record warmth is expected Wednesday, with Manhattan’s forecast high near 75 degrees. That would smash the current record for Dec. 15 of 69 degrees set back in 2002. The warmest temperature ever recorded in Manhattan this late in the season is 73 degrees, recorded Dec. 17, 1939.