In addition to the warm temperatures that are eventually installed on the Quebec, several regions are experiencing a period of unusual dryness for the month of may, greatly increasing the risk of forest fires.
“It is quite rare that one has an equally long period without rain,” says meteorologist Alexandre Parent of Environment Canada.
For the region of Montreal, he fell 25 mm of rain during the month of may-so far – while the normal is around 80 mm, ” explains the meteorologist to TVANouvelles.ca
Thus, if it’s not raining too much over the next 9 days, may 2020 may register in the table of records as the month of the most dry of the last 20 years in the metropolis.
“Next week we expect some rain and thunderstorms so this is not sure yet,” says Mr. Parent.
In the rain to have little rainfall, the relative humidity is unusually low and is running around 15% to 30%.
“It is rather as in a climate of desert regions such as Arizona. There is no humidex in spite of the warm temperatures”, does it give as an example.
The relative humidity in Montreal usually rotates around 40% to 50% and even 70% in some periods.
It is necessary to go back in 2016 to regain the month of may is also dry so that Environment Canada had recorded 34 mm of rain.
Dry everywhere in Quebec
For Quebec as a whole, the rainfall is 50% to 80% below normal.
“The only region that is not affected is the North Shore, which is more near normal precipitation,” notes the specialist.
The Société de protection des forêts contre le feu (SOPFEU) has issued its notice of prohibition of open fires in more than 17 regions, those where the snow cover has disappeared.
The danger of forest fire is termed”extreme” by the Society for the protection of forests against fire.
“Since the beginning of the spring, a number of fires is much higher than usual has been saved, and this, in spite of the prohibition of open fires, which prevails over a large part of the territory of quebec. Since Saturday, 64 fires were recorded. The current weather conditions result in a fire hazard up to the level of “extreme” on a majority of the quebec territory,” said the organization via press release.
The coming days are likely to be conducive to the outbreak of new fires. In addition to the high temperatures expected during the end of the week the absence of rainfall and very low humidity will help the fires.
Dry grasses and dead leaves are particularly flammable and are used as kindling for fires.
“It is not enough that a few hours of sunshine and a little wind to dry out the brush and increase the danger of fire, even in places where the snow has just disappeared,” says the SOPFEU.
Since the beginning of the season of protection, 236 fires were started affecting 254,1 hectares (ha) of forest, of which 100 % are attributable to human activity. On average, the SOPFEU records at this period of the year, 134 fire for 1751,8 ha of affected forest.