Due to the expected high winds on Friday and the high temperatures, fire bans have been put into place for Rice and Steele counties. This is in effect immediately and until further notice.

The National Weather Service has issued a Fire Watch starting at noon and through this evening for central and southern Minnesota. Southerly winds are expected to be gusting to 30 mph and humidity around 25 percent. It is possible that dew point and humidity values may be lower than expected and this watch may need to be upgraded later.

Counties in the area affected are: Sibley, Carver, Scott, Nicollet, Le Sueur, Rice, Blue Earth, Waseca, Steele, Martin, Faribault and Freeborn.

Mike Eiler/Townsquare Media