Dry weather will prolong the wildfire threat through summer in the southwestern United States, even though weekend showers temporarily relieved drought conditions in parts of the area, forecasters said Monday.
The drought is rooted in a dry spell that began in October and is considered extreme from southern California to central Kansas. Conditions are even worse in the Four Corners region and the Oklahoma and Texas panhandles, warranting their description as exceptional.
The proverbial spigot shut off, said Brian Fuchs, a climatologist at the National Drought Mitigation Center at the University of Nebraska in Lincoln. Drought isnt necessarily a signal for wildfires, but it can exacerbate the conditions that do take place.