Red flag warning for San Diego County mountains, valleys expires

SAN DIEGO - Dry conditions and gusty wind continued to raise the risk of wildfires in San Diego County's mountains and valleys Sunday, meteorologists said.

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Red flag warnings remained up until 6 p.m. Sunday for the valleys and mountain areas, including the Palomar and Descanso ranger districts of the Cleveland National Forest.

National Weather Service forecasters expected the lowest daytime relative humidity to be around 8 percent.

"A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity and warm days will contribute to extreme fire behavior," the NWS said.

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A wind advisory for the valleys expired at 2 p.m., but an advisory for the mountains was scheduled to remain in effect until 9 a.m. Monday.

Northeast winds of 15-30 mph, with gusts of up to 45 mph are expected in the mountains, which could make driving difficult, especially for those in high profile vehicles. Peak gusts to 50 mph are possible near the foothills, below Cuyamaca Mountain and along parts of Interstate 8, according to the NWS.

Winds of 10-20 mph with gusts of up to 40 mph are expected in the in the inland valleys, forecasters said.

"Surface pressure gradients will continue to weaken over Southern California this afternoon and evening, with just some windy conditions lingering in the San Diego County mountains and foothills," the advisory said.

The winds are expected to decrease Monday, however, forecasters said locally gusty conditions would be possible at times, which could again elevate the risk of wildfire concerns.

"Very dry conditions will prevail across the Southland through early evening as the Santa Ana winds continue to weaken," the NWS said. "Although these winds will gradually weaken through tonight and into Monday, breezy, warm and very dry conditions will continue through Tuesday."

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