WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The National Interagency Fire Center www.nifc.gov (NIFC) in Boise, Idaho reports the potential for wildfires remains above normal in all or parts of 16 US states between now and May 5, particularly in the southwest and southeast.
The largest area threatened includes western Texas, the southern half of New Mexico, the southern half of Arizona, Southern California, and the southern areas of Nevada and Utah. Conditions are so severe in Texas the governor recently submitted a request to FEMA for an Emergency Disaster Declaration to preposition resources in anticipation of the need for fire fighting later this year.
In the Southeast, nearly all of Florida and the extreme eastern areas of the Georgia and the Carolinas are also in the above normal category. The northern counties of Minnesota, Michigan and Wisconsin also fall into the above normal level. In Washington, Oregon and most of the southern half of Idaho, the likelihood of wildfire is in the below normal area.
The remainder of the country falls into the normal range. NIFC is currently tracking three wildfires. The largest is in the Inyo National Forest in California, where 2,500 acres are burning. That blaze is 100 percent contained.
In South Carolina, firefighters are gaining the upper hand on a 900-acre fire. That blaze, located near Cainhoy, is 80 percent contained. Crews are expected to be released from the scene today.
Finally, firefighters are not sure when they will be able to contain a 150-acre fire in Pennsylvania. The fire is located near Ferry, Pa. Officials hope that rain predicted for the region today will help this fire fight.