Today's windy and dry conditions will join together to create the potential for "explosive fire growth," according to the National Weather Service.
The service has issued a "red flag warning" for Naugatuck, as well as much of southern portion of the state.
The warning — which runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. — means "critical fire conditions" will exist throughout the day today.
Fire Could ‘Move Faster Than a Person Can Run’
Kenneth Hanks described like a “perfect storm.”
“When there’s low humidity the fuel — branches, twigs, leaves, grass — lose their moisture in the air,” Hanks said. “When that happens it becomes easy to ignite.”
The fires that spring up tend to be surface fires, which are fast-moving blazes that actually move faster uphill, the chief said.
“A fire on a day like today would move faster than a person can run,” Hanks said. “Because it’d be pushed along at wind speed.”
Astonishingly enough, the damage caused by Tropical Storm Irene and the October snowstorm could have an effect today during this potential brush fire season.
“The storms knocked down trees and caused branches to fall,” Hanks said. “And that means more dried out fuel on the ground to burn.”
Forest Fire Danger 'Very High'
"Fires will be very difficult to control today especially when the winds are gusting (20-25 mph) this afternoon," the office reported on its website this morning.
According to the state, Connecticut traditionally experiences high forest fire danger from mid-March through May.
Throughout the spring forest fire season, DEEP sends daily advisories on forest fire danger levels to DEEP's state park forest field staff, municipalities, fire departments and the media.
Forest fire danger levels are classified at low, moderate, high, very high or extreme.
Today's DEEP forest fire danger level sits at "very high."
"If you have received a permit from your local Open Burning Official to burn brush on your property, the permit is not valid if the Forest Fire Danger is rated high, very high or extreme and you are burning within 100 feet of a grassland or woodland," the office states.
If You Spot a Fire
If you spot a forest fire, the office urges residents to dial 911 to report the fire as quickly as possible to your local fire department.
"Calmly tell the emergency dispatcher when you saw it and where you saw it," the office states. "Stay on the telephone until the dispatcher tells you to hang up."