A cold front dropping into the Lowcountry is expected to increase the risk for brush fires Tuesday afternoon, forecasters said.

The anticipated rising wind speeds and low humidity prompted a "fire danger statement" from the National Weather Service station in Charleston.

The cold front was forecast to sweep through the area late Tuesday morning, increasing the fire threat from noon to 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Westward winds should then increase to nearly 25 mph with gusts of 40 mph, the forecasts said.

Relative humidity will drop to as low as 30 percent.

The weather service said that anyone planning an outside fire Tuesday in southeastern South Carolina should first check with local authorities, then use "extreme caution" if those plans go forward.

With the cold front, overnight temperature readings in the Charleston area should dip below freezing through Friday.

Here's the weather service forecast:

Tuesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 63. Breezy, with a west wind 10 to 15 mph increasing to 20 to 25 mph in the afternoon. Winds could gust as high as 39 mph.

Tuesday night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 27. Breezy, with a northwest wind 13 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 36 mph.

Wednesday: Sunny, with a high near 41. Northwest wind 8 to 11 mph.

Wednesday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 26. West wind 3 to 6 mph.

Thursday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 50. West wind 6 to 11 mph.

Thursday night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 25.

Friday: Sunny, with a high near 38.

Friday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 25.

Saturday: Sunny, with a high near 52.

Saturday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 36.

Sunday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 55.

Sunday night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 38.

Monday: Sunny, with a high near 60.

Reach Andrew Knapp at 937-5414 or twitter.com/offlede.