By Jeff Ray

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – North Texas is still in a drought, which means that wildfires pose a definite threat in our area. DFW is in the grass fire season. We have plenty of dormant or dead vegetation in a time that is normally dry and windy. Saturday afternoon is going to see strong winds and low humidity.

The National Weather Service is again warning North Texans of the elevated fire danger.

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Grass fires rode strong gusts of wind toward homes in Benbrook in January 2008. That was an especially dry month — only a quarter of an inch of rain fell in all of that January. And that was despite the fact that 2007 was the wettest year in the last 20 years.

North Texas is even more at risk this year, however. First of all, we have had four years in a row of rainfall deficits. And it has been dry lately. Of the last four months, including this one, three months have been below normal. Since October 1, we have had just over eight inches of rain.

We should have had more than 10 inches of rain.

Do not expect much relief. Not only is dry weather in the forecast, statistics do not paint an optimistic picture. This is supposed to be a dry time — winter is the driest season of the year.

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Keep in mind that most of North Texas is also still classified as abnormally dry, or in a moderate drought. In fact, there is still a severe drought going on in Young County and Palo Pinto County.

Most of our western counties have burn bans in effect, and you can expect more areas to issue them heading into the spring.

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