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Long Island weather: Red flag warning for high fire risk on windy, dry day

The warning will be in effect until 8 p.m., the National Weather Service said.

 A red flag warning remains in effect for Long Island through 8 p.m. Thursday, as weather conditions could lead to the fast spread of any fires. 

“Gusty winds and very dry air will create conditions that may promote the rapid spread of wildfires if ignition occurs,” the National Weather Service said. That's as the "already very dry fuels" — dead grasses, twigs, leaves — "will dry out further via gusty winds and plenty of sunshine."

As of around 3 p.m., winds from the west/northwest were gusting up to 26 mph at Long Island MacArthur Airport, where the temperature was 56 degrees. Normals for the day at the Ronkonkoma-based airport are 54 for the high and 37, the low.

Thursday, with sunny skies,was expected to see temperatures rising to the upper 50s, forecasters said.

“Great weather for the Mets game at Citi Field,” said News 12 Long Island meteorologist Rich Hoffman about the team's home opener.

Winds of 10 to 20 mph were in the forecast, with gusts as high as 35 mph, the weather service said.

As a reminder, New York State prohibits residential brush burning from March 16 to May 14 to reduce wildfires and their impacts, the state Department of Environmental Conservation said in a release Wednesday.

“Historically, open burning of debris is the largest single cause of spring wildfires in New York State,” the DEC said. Also, that “burning garbage or leaves is prohibited year-round.”

For Friday, we can expect "noticeably cooler daytime temps," the low 40s, the weather service said. Chances of rain enter the picture, most likely starting in the afternoon and continuing overnight, the service said.

There's a chance of rain Saturday morning, with the rest of the day mostly sunny, with highs in the upper 50s. 

“It’s going to be a nice, sunny, warm afternoon on Saturday,” said Rich Hoffman, News 12 Long Island meteorologist.

Sunday should also be mostly sunny, with highs in the mid-50s. There is a chance of showers overnight into Monday.

“Overall, pretty decent weekend,” Hoffman said.

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