Week begins with high fire danger across parts of Ariz.

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by Kim Quintero

Bio | Email | Follow: @kimquintero

azfamily.com

Posted on May 18, 2014 at 6:09 PM

Updated Monday, May 19 at 2:19 PM

PHOENIX -- A low pressure system tracking into the Pacific Northwest will bring gusty winds across most of Arizona for the start of the work week.

Red Flag Warnings are in effect Sunday evening and again Monday for northern, eastern and southeastern Arizona. Fire Weather Watches are in effect for Tuesday across these areas. Wind gusts will range from 35 to 45 mph. Humidity will be below 10 percent. Combined with dry fuels already in place, a small spark could create an explosive fire.

In the Valley, winds will kick up Monday and Tuesday afternoon to sustained speeds of around 15 mph.

The low pressure system is expected to bring a gradual cooling trend through Wednesday, with temperatures remain below normal for the rest of the week. For Monday, expect highs in the upper 90s around the Valley, with the low 90s for Tuesday and the upper 80s on Wednesday.

A cutoff area of low pressure will remain north of Arizona through the rest of the week. There may be enough instability in the atmosphere Thursday and Friday to produce some dry lightning across the high country. This would certainly elevate fire danger headed into the Memorial Day weekend. Temperatures will remain cooler than normal through the weekend.

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