Fire Weather and the Oklahoma Fire Danger Model
Case Study
Case Study Page
Exercise Data

1. Before the model can apply weather data, it must first "set the table" with the current vegetation status across Oklahoma. Check out the most recent visual and relative greenness values near the bottom of the OKFD output page. Where is it greenest? Now look at the relative and visual greenness images from March 16, 2000. On these images, there is a definite band of greenness which runs from west of Lawton to Enid to west of Ponca City. Based on what you know of Oklahoma in mid-March, what is causing this band?  Answer

2. View the output from the most recent run (probably the 2 pm run) of the OKFD model and the latest Mesonet data. (Use the plug-in or the fire-weather map) At which locations in the state is a fire the most likely to ignite?  Answer

3. At which locations in the state would a wildfire spread the most rapidly?   Answer

4. At which locations in the state would a fire be most intense, if a fire were to start?   Answer

5. According to the model, are litter and dried grass clippings relatively moist or relatively dry? Does this agree with your assessment of the recent weather?   Answer

6. If a wildfire were to occur near your hometown, which way would it propagate?   Answer

7. Take a minute to observe the output from the 3:00 pm runs of the OKFD Model for the dates of October 17-21. Focus on the Burning Index (BI). Take note of the changes from one afternoon to the next.   Answer

8. These five model runs all used the same NDVI (satellite) data, so what is responsible for the day-to-day changes?   Answer

9. The BI values drop significantly from the afternoon of the 18th to the afternoon of the 19th to the afternoon of the 20th. Was there any significant rainfall on either of these days? Why did the BI values drop?   Answer

10. Look the the BI output on the afternoon of the 21st. In the western half of the state, there is a sharp difference in the BI values north and south of (about) I-40. The temperature, relative humidity and wind speed values don't change too dramatically in this area. Why is there such a sharp change?   Answer

11. Take a minute to examine the Spread Component (SC) and BI output from each model run between 7:00 am on the 19th and 1:00 am on the 20th. Take note of the changes in BI and SC from one run to the next.   Answer

12. Why are the BI and SC values from the afternoon runs higher than the values from the morning and overnight runs? Would you expect this on an uneventful day like the 19th?   Answer

13. Look at the Tipton meteogram. What time of day would you expect Tipton to have the highest BI and SC values?   Answer

14. Tipton and southwestern Oklahoma experienced much higher 3:00 pm SC values than Seiling and northwestern Oklahoma. Compare the Seiling meteogram to the Tipton meteogram. Assuming that the NDVI (vegetation) information is roughly the same for each station, what happened to cause the Tipton SC to be higher than the Seiling SC?   Answer

15. Review the NGM MOS Guidance for the station of your choice. MOS guidance provides a good "first guess" forecast for coming days. Based on MOS guidance, do you expect the fire danger near your chosen station to worsen, lessen, or stay the same?   Answer

16. Examine the latest Keetch-Byram Drought Index (KBDI) values for the state. Which portions of the state show drought condition tendencies? Compare the KDBI map to the ABRFC 30-day precipitation totals. Do the maps generally agree?   Answer

OK-FIRST Project, Oklahoma Climatological Survey, 100 East Boyd Street, Suite 1210, Norman, OK 73019.
Copyright © 1996-2005 Oklahoma Climatological Survey. All Rights Reserved.
Send comments or questions concerning OK-FIRST to