Stormy Weather and Fire Season

RENO, NV - Thunderstorms across the valley made themselves known on Monday, and with them rain, and in some cases hail the size of pennies battered windshields as drivers made their way through Pleasant Valley.

Lightning caused a small brush fire in this area just before noon, but by the time KOLO 8 News Now crews got there it was already out.

On the other side of the valley Chief Charles Moore talked about what he thinks about when he sees clouds like this on the horizon.

“More of the same for today. We have a lot of lightning predicted the good news is for today we have wetting rains following the lightning so if we do get a strike from lightning, we will get precipitation to follow it,” says Moore, Battalion Chief with Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District.

Firefighters really needed that help yesterday when this lightning caused fire came dangerously close to 8 homes in the Red Rock area.

A 24 hour map of lightning strikes shows purple dots that turn into stains from yesterday to this morning.

Nearly three thousand strikes in the state of California alone, that doesn't begin the count the strikes just over the state line in Nevada, and the one to start the fire in Red Rock.

In an open pasture Moore says the rain will only give the brush and weeds about three days to dry out again and become extremely flammable.

When they sound crunchy they are already parched and there are plenty of patches like in the field alone.

That's why signs that encourage defensible space need to be heeded by local residents now more than ever, a drive around some rural neighborhoods and you can see some homeowners have their work cut out for them

The worse of course for firefighters is dry lightning which isn't followed by rainfall.

Those conditions were present last Wednesday and Thursday before the humidity increased