Dry and windy conditions are causing concerns that burning could be hazardous in northeast Iowa today (Monday, April 24, 2017).

The National Weather Service (NWS) has posted an advisory for several counties, warning of an elevated fire danger. The following counties in Iowa are included in the advisory: Allamakee, Chickasaw, Clayton, Fayette, Floyd, Howard, Mitchell and Winneshiek.

According to NWS, low relative humidity and strong south winds of 15 to 25 miles per hour -- with gusts up to 35 m.p.h. -- will combine to create an elevated fire danger across the area. Forecasters warn that fires could start easily and spread quickly. They are encouraging everyone in the affected counties to check with local authorities before considering any outdoor burning activities.

Officials said anyone using hot equipment near dry, grassy areas should be extra careful. Also, motorists should not discard cigarettes outside the vehicle.

Forecasters expect conditions to improve later this evening.

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