Vermilion County Emergency Management officials have posted a "red flag" warning citing "dangerous conditions" for burning until 7 p.m. Wednesday.

The action was taken as a result of a National Weather Service warning issued to take effect at noon.

The area affected includes the Illinois counties of Woodford, Tazewell, McLean, Mason, Logan, De Witt, Piatt, Champaign, Vermilion, Macon, Moultrie, Douglas, Coles, Edgar and Shelby Counties.

Southwest winds are forecast throughout the day at 20 to 30 mph with gusts 35 to 45 mph.

With humidity low at 25 percent, any fires that develop will likely spread rapidly, official said. Therefore, outdoor burning is not recommended.

The NWS "red flag" warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now, or will shortly. A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity, and warm temperatures can contribute to extreme fire behavior.

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