Red Flag issued

Portions of southeast Wyoming and the Nebraska Panhandle are under a Fire Weather Warning until 8 p.m. this evening.

The National Weather Service in Cheyenne issued the alert for Platte, Goshen and eastern Laramie counties in Wyoming and portions of the Pine Ridge, Nebraska National Forest and the Oglala National Grasslands in the panhandle. A Red Flag Warning means conditions are favorable for critical fire weather conditions, either immediately or in the very near future.

That does not mean fires will start spontaneously, but a combination of strong winds, low humidity and warmer temperatures make conditions ripe for fires to spread quickly, once they ignite. Any fires that do develop in the warned area are likely to spread rapidly.

Outdoor burning is discouraged. Local and county fire bans were issued in June for portions of the warned area and some state and federal agencies have prohibited open fires on lands under their control in the region.