Santa Ana winds threaten more fire, wind damage in San Diego County

Posted at 2:22 PM, Dec 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-09 17:46:20-05

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Santa Ana winds swept through the East County Saturday, as San Diego County's Red Flag warning extends into late Sunday.

The wind event has driven the flames of the Lilac Fire, burning through the North County since Thursday.

Winds will be stronger late Saturday into Sunday morning. Foothills could experience gusts up to 60 mph.

RELATED: Supervisor Jacob scolds SDG&E for power outages

SDG&E is monitoring the wind speeds across the county and plan to proactively turn off power if they deem necessary due to safety.

As of 11:30 a.m. Saturday, about 5,800 county residents had power shut off for safety reasons - about 4,400 in the fire zone and 1,400 due to proactive shut off outside of fire.

SDG&E spokesperson Colleen Windsor told 10News crews would be working Saturday to restore power to those they can throughout the day. However, there are still customers within the fire zone they may not have power restored immediately.

RELATED: Boil water order issued during power outages

To help during these events, the company is offering free water, Wi-Fi, and cell phone charging at SDG&E's mobile center at the Park & Ride lot on Japatul Valley Road in Descanso, just north of the intersection of State Route 79 and Interstate 8.

The power company has a wind mapping tool to measure which areas are experiencing the strongest gusts. The information will be used to determine when power needs to be shut off for public safety.

Saturday, Cal Fire said firefighters were able to increase containment lines but warned weekend winds were a concern.   

"This morning, weather will be favorable. However, this afternoon shifting winds are predicted which will create active fire throughout the day," Cal Fire said.