Extreme temperatures expected this week, ‘red flag’ warning in effect as wildfire danger rises

Gales Creek – Temperatures are expected to rise this week to potentially record breaking highs in the Willamette Valley, according to the Portland office of the National Weather Service.

Starting at 12 pm on Tuesday and ending Friday at 11 pm, the Portland Metro region and surrounding areas, including the northwest Coast Range and the communities nearby, are under an excessive heat warning, with temperatures climbing to 104 to 107 degrees on Wednesday and Thursday, with temperatures remaining close to 100 degrees on Friday.

Additionally, a red flag warning is in effect starting Monday, July 31 at 2 pm to 9 pm Monday night. According to the National Weather Service, “a Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now, or will shortly. A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity, and warm temperatures can contribute to extreme fire behavior.”

In a statement released by Forest Grove Fire & Rescue, the fire department asked area residents to be cautious as even a small spark can cause a large fire.

During excessive heat warnings, be sure to take precautionary measures to ensure you, your family, and your pets are safe.

  • If you work or spend time outside, be aware of your limits, and drink plenty of fluids. If possible, reschedule your outdoor activities to early morning or the evening.
  • Know the warning signs of heat exhaustion and heatstroke.
  • Stay indoors in a cool area, if possible.
  • Check up on your neighbors and relatives, especially if they are elderly.
  • Young children and pets should never be left unattended in a vehicle. High temperatures can turn the interior of a car lethal in a matter of minutes.
  • Be extremely cautious with power tools and any potential heat sources if you are working outdoors.

For more information on current wildfires in Oregon, visit www.isoregononfire.com.

Sources and more information:

Red Flag Warning
Excessive Heat Warning
Portland NWS
Forest Grove Fire & Rescue statement
Warning signs of heat related illnesses

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