CLARKSBURG, W.Va. (WBOY) — West Virginia is under a special weather weather statement for enhanced fire danger on Thursday, according to the National Weather Service (NWS) in Charleston and Pittsburgh.

The NWS said that the ongoing dry conditions will mix with very low humidity on Wednesday afternoon to lead to an elevated fire danger risk, therefore open burning of any kind is considered extremely dangerous. It’s asking people to refer to their local burn permitting authorities as to whether or not they can burn and to use extreme caution if they do burn because fires can become out of hand quickly under these conditions.

Those using equipment that can spark or who are smoking in wooded areas are also asked by the NWS to use caution.

The weather statement is in effect for:

  • Barbour County
  • Boone County
  • Braxton County
  • Cabell County
  • Calhoun County
  • Clay County
  • Doddridge County
  • Fayette County
  • Gilmer County
  • Greenbrier County
  • Harrison County
  • Jackson County
  • Kanawha County
  • Lewis County
  • Lincoln County
  • Mason County
  • McDowell County
  • Mercer County
  • Mingo County
  • Monroe County
  • Nicholas County
  • Pleasants County
  • Pocahontas County
  • Putnam County
  • Randolph County
  • Roane County
  • Ritchie County
  • Summer County
  • Taylor County
  • Tyler County
  • Upshur County
  • Wayne County
  • Webster County
  • Wirt County
  • Wood County
  • Wyoming County
Credit: National Weather Service

Additionally, a Special Weather Statement from the National Weather Service in Pittsburgh, warns that several West Virginia counties will experience the same weather conditions putting them at risk of fire, as well as occasional wind gusts of up to 20 mph. Those counties are Hancock County, Brooke County, Ohio County, Marshall County, Wetzel County, Marion County and Monongalia County, as well as parts of Preston and Tucker counties and the Eastern Panhandle.

Credit: National Weather Service

Residents of those counties are asked by the NWS Pittsburgh to take the same precautions.

This comes as the Steep Valley Fire continues to burn in the New River Gorge National Park and Preserve; it had grown to impact more than 2,000 acres as of Tuesday. On Monday evening, a fire started in the Monongahela National Forest in Pocahontas County.