- Associated Press - Monday, May 23, 2016

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - An extreme risk of wildfires has prompted Wisconsin officials to ban burning in a dozen northern counties.

Warm temperatures, low humidity, strong winds and very dry vegetation led the National Weather Service to issue a red flag warning. It’s in effect until 7 p.m. Monday for Ashland, Iron, Price, Oneida, Vilas, Lincoln, Langlade, Forest, Florence, Oconto, Marinette and Menominee counties.

Temperatures will be in the lower 80s, but humidity will fall to 17-25 percent. Wind will be gusting up to 30 mph.

The warning means the Department of Natural Resources is prohibiting burning for those holding DNR-issued burning permits.

And the agency is strongly encouraging everyone to be very careful when handling fire outside, whether it’s in the form of campfires or smoking, or operating chain saws or off-road vehicles.

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