Fire Weather and Forecast
Of the three sides of the fire behavior triangle (fuels, weather and topography), weather is the most variable and least predictable. Changes in weather can lead to unexpected fire behavior and result in danger to life and property, whether the fire is the result of a carefully planned prescribed fire or a wildfire. Knowledge of current and forecast weather is critical for all fire managers and firefighters.
The goal of the Florida Forest Service Fire Weather and Forecast site is to provide current and forecast weather information to fire managers and fire suppression professionals across the state. We are actively developing new and innovative tools for firefighters and land managers in the state of Florida.
Some of the fire weather information we provide include:
Other sources of fire weather information include:
The National Weather Service provides all the official fire weather forecasts for the state of Florida. These forecasts are available from individual NWS web sites or from the Florida Forest Service's Forest Weather Information web page. Forecasts from MM5 are also available. The Florida Forest Service has developed a program to provide spot weather forecasts to all prescribed fire managers based on forecast data from the National Weather Service. The meteorologist for the Florida Forest Service also creates a long-range fire season outlook four times a year for the state. This outlook is based in part on seasonal outlooks from NOAA's National Climate Prediction Center.
Florida is located in an area that is prone to impacts from tropical cyclones. Four hurricanes impacted the state in 2004. Current and forecast tropical weather information has been compiled in a central location on the Florida Forest Service web site for the use of residents of the state during tropical cyclone season.
Background information on fire weather and the tools being used by the Florida Forest Service is available in the Information Section of the Fire Weather and Forecast web site.