Gov. Laura Kelly has issued a verbal declaration of disaster emergency, due to wildfires across Kansas.

The declaration allows the state to preposition assets for faster response to any fires that develop. Resources including aviation will be available and prepared to respond quickly to any requests for assistance.

Extreme dryness has developed in many parts of Kansas over the past month displaced from the last wetting rain.

According to the National Weather Service, Manhattan has received barely a trace of precipitation in April. The last measurable rainfall came on March 28 (.03 inches).

The U.S. Drought Monitor shows abnormally dry conditions throughout Riley County and western Pottawatomie County, with areas of extreme to exceptional drought now blanketing most of western and southwestern Kansas, stretching into parts of southeastern Kansas.