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Hot, windy Utah forecast has firefighters crossing fingers

Published June 12, 2013 7:42 am

"Red Flag" • Wildfire danger rated as extreme for southwest, but worries abound statewide.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Winds up to 75 mph toppled trees in the Salt Lake Valley on Thursday night as hot temperatures and continuing winds heightened wildfire risks in southwest Utah.

The National Weather Service reported microburst winds gusting more than 60 mph in several locations throughout northern Utah, with the fastest winds clocked at 75 mph at South Valley Regional Airport in West Jordan.

Southwestern Utah was once again under a "Red Flag" wildfire danger warning into late Wednesday night and the western two-thirds of the state was included in a "Hazardous Weather Outlook."

The latter advisory — in effect for the remainder of this week and through the weekend — noted that hot, windy weather and the potential for thunderstorms and lightning with little or no precipitation made much of the state a tinder box.

Northern Utah's high temperatures Thursday were expected to soar into the low-90s, about 10 to 15 degrees above normal for this time of year.

Southern Utah looked for highs Thursday into the low triple digits with winds of 15 to 25 mph, a mirror forecast of Wednesday's climatological expectations for Utah's Dixie.

As long as firefighters' luck does hold, air quality throughout the state was rated "Green," or healthy by the Utah Division of Air Quality.

The Intermountain Allergy & Asthma web site had grass pollen levels "very high" and plantain and mold at "high," but otherwise the mid-week was looking pretty good for allergy sufferers.

Salt Lake City's high temperature for Thursday was pegged at 93, down a bit from 97 degrees Wednesday; Ogden looked for 87, down from 92 degrees; Provo 92 up from 91; Logan 85 down from 90; Wendover 86 down from 95; Duchesne 89 up from 86; Cedar City 89 down from 91; and St. George 101 down from 102.

remims@sltrib.com

Twitter: @remims