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Forecasters: High risk of fires in Philadelphia area

Forecasters are warning that there's a high risk of brush fires in the Philadelphia region today and Thursday.

The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning for 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. today, and a fire weather watch for most of the day Thursday.

Authorities said the alerts, which cover the bulk of New Jersey and southeastern Pennsylvania, mean "critical fire weather conditions" are occurring or about to occur.

The weather service says the low humidity and strong winds expected today and Thursday is a prime combination for brush fires.

"Any fires that develop may quickly get out of control and become difficult to contain," the weather service said.

Forecasters say to expect northwest winds of 15 to 30 mph, with gusts up to 35 mph, today. Humidity values will generally be in the 30s, with some places dipping below 30 percent.

On Thursday, forecasters say 15 to 20 mph winds are expected, with gusts up to 30 mph, along with humidity values in the teens and 20s.