– We encourage people to use their heads and not light fires, says fire chief Tore Støkken in the Moss fire service.
He says that the fire service is concerned about the severe forest fire danger in the district.
– It is dry, and it will get drier. Although it has started to turn green on the ground, there is still brown vegetation left from last year.
Moss is one of the cities that is now heavily exposed to grass and forest fires.
– There has been little rainfall for a while and the heat came on quickly, says Støkken.
There is a great danger of forest and grass fires in several places in Eastern Norway. In Østfold, Moss, Sarpsborg, Askim and Mysen are most exposed in the next few days, shows the forest fire danger index of the Meteorological Institute.
Big weather differences in the country
While the risk of forest fires is high and the weather fine in Eastern Norway, the situation is completely different elsewhere in the country.
There is a snow warning on the mountain pass in the north.
– There is a low snow limit. If you are going over the mountain, you must expect winter weather, says on-duty meteorologist Rafael Escobar Løvdahl.
In northern Norway, strong winds and snow have been reported in several places. On Værøy, the wind has already taken hold, and large tank plates have flown into the air.
In Western Norway, in Trøndelag and in Nordland, there will be periods of rain and cold.
It won’t be as hot during the Whitsun weekend as one would first think, says the meteorologist, but Østfold is perhaps the luckiest with lots of sun and little rainfall.
Monday will probably be the hottest and driest, with temperatures reaching the twenties in the middle of the day. There will still be a lot of wind, with strength up to a slight gale on the coast.
– It will be a bit more windy than you would like. This is a driving factor for fire when it first starts.
Asking people to be careful
Støkken in the Moss fire service asks people in the district to be aware of the increased forest fire danger.
– Even though it is legal to light a fire now, there is no point in challenging fate.
– In any case, you are left with the responsibility yourself, he says.
He asks to leave the disposable barbecues and not to light fires.
– The increased risk of forest fires means that people simply have to be careful.
The fire service in Moss is now preparing for busy days ahead.
– We have increased focus on having extra hoses and manning the tankers, says Støkken.
He says that they generally have good staffing at the fire station. Therefore, they have not increased preparedness.