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Lightning possible on Peninsula tonight

August 11th, 2014 - 2:04pm

(Seattle) -- The National Weather Service has issued a red flag warning for scattered to abundant lightning in the eastern portion of the Olympic Mountains for 24 hours, beginning at 5 o'clock this afternoon.

National Weather Service meteorologist Steve Reedy in Seattle says they are seeing some thunderstorms developing in portions of Oregon this afternoon.

They are expected to move slowly across the Cascade crest and eventually into the Olympics, increasing the risk of fire ignition and growth.

The lightning threat is expected to continue overnight into a good portion of Tuesday before temperatures dropped to seasonal normals on Wednesday.

Due to the extreme fire danger across nearly all of Washington from hot, dry weather, the state has expanded its ban on outdoor fires.

The state Department of Natural Resources says the ban now includes campfires at campgrounds.

A burn ban has been in effect but the use of approved fire pits was allowed until now.

Firefighters already battling 26 large fires across Oregon, Washington and Idaho are bracing for more as another round of lightning storms crosses the Northwest this week.

The Northwest Interagency Coordination Center in Portland reports that intense lighting is expected today from the coast, across the Cascades and into Idaho.

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