National Weather Service warns of increased risk of wildfire

SAN DIEGO – Strong, gusty winds and very low humidity expected to start Sunday could increase the risk for wildfires and caused Red Flag Warnings to be posted today for mountain areas from Orange County east to the deserts, and a less-severe fire weather watch for inland valleys.

The NWS issued the Red Flag Warning to remain in effect from 7 p.m. Sunday to 4 p.m. Monday for mountain areas including the Palomar and Descanso ranger districts of the Cleveland National Forest.

”A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now or will shortly,” the NWS advisory stated. ”A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity and warm temperatures will create explosive fire growth potential.”

Similar warnings were posted for the Santa Ana Mountains west of Lake Elsinore, and the mountains of Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

A fire weather watch was to remain in effect from Sunday morning to Monday afternoon for Inland Empire valleys.

”A fire weather watch means that critical fire weather conditions are forecast to occur,” the NWS advisory stated. ”Listen for later forecasts and possible Red Flag Warnings.”

High pressure over the northern part of the state is expected to combined with building surface pressure over the Great Basin and could lead to a favorable weather pattern for weak to moderate Santa Ana winds.

Northeast to east winds of 10 to 15 miles per hour with gusts up to 45 mph are expected in the mountains. Eastern winds of 10 to 20 mph with gusts of up to 40 mph are expected in the inland valleys, according to the NWS.

Forecasters expected relative humidity to be very low and both the dead and live fuel moisture levels would remain below critical values.

The NWS said winds would diminish Monday night and humidity readings would start to increase Tuesday night and continue to rise throughout the end of next week.


National Weather Service warns of increased risk of wildfire

RIVERSIDE – Strong, gusty winds and low humidity expected to blow through parts of Riverside and San Bernardino counties could increase the risk for wildfires starting Sunday, the National Weather Service said today.

The National Weather Service issued a Fire Weather Watch to remain in effect from Sunday morning to Monday afternoon for the Riverside and San Bernardino counties valleys, the Inland Empire and Riverside County and San Bernardino County mountain areas, including the San Jacinto, Mountain Top and Front County ranger districts of the San Bernardino National Forest.

The Santa Ana Mountains in Orange County were also included.

”A Fire Weather Watch means that critical fire weather conditions are forecast to occur,” the NWS advisory stated. ”Listen for later forecasts and possible Red Flag Warnings.”

High pressure over the northern part of the state is expected to combine with building surface pressure over the Great Basin to lead to a favorable weather pattern for weak to moderate Santa Ana winds.

Northeast winds of 10 to 15 miles per hour with gusts up 35 mph in the mountains and valleys are likely after 1 a.m. Sunday. Eastern winds of 15 to 25 mph with gusts of up to 45 mph are expected Sunday night and Monday, according to the NWS.

Forecasters expected relative humidity to be very low and live fuel moisture levels to remain below critical values.

Relative humidity is expected to increase Monday evening, but gusts of more than 35 mph could blow across mountain areas until Tuesday evening, according to the NWS.

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