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Fire danger elevated for Dallas-Fort Worth area

The northwestern half of North Texas, including Fort Worth and Dallas, will see high fire danger condtions Monday as warm temperatures and low humidity will raise the risk of wildfires.

There will be an even more serious risk of wildfires across the Red River in southern Oklahoma, where a red flag warning is in effect. A red flag warning means that any grass fire that starts will likely spread rapidly.

The warm temperatures will stick around for most of the week, though there is a chance of rain on Friday and this weekend.

"It will be cooler if we do get some rain this weekend but it doesn't look significantly cooler for the next week," said National Weather Service meteorologist Matt Bishop.

So far this year, the wildfire season has been quiet compared to last year.

In 2011, wildfires across Texas destroyed 2,909 homes and caused nearly $600 million in damage, including $360 million in Bastrop and $100 million at Possum Kingdom.

Long range forecasts aren't predicting a repeat this year.

The Climate Prediction Center's three month-outlook says there's a greater likelihood of above-normal precipitation across about half of Texas for the next three months, including the DFW area.

Forecasters are predicting a return of El Niño this winter, which usually means wetter conditions for Texas. But some forecasters are saying it will be weak, which means it may not have as much of an impact for North Texas.

High temperatures are forecast to be in the 90s through Thursday with lows in the lower 70s.

Bill Hanna, 817-390-7698

Twitter: @fwhanna

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