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Red Flag Warning set to take effect amid dry conditions in San Diego

California Wildfires Threaten Biodiversity
Posted at 3:05 PM, Oct 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-23 08:20:57-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - A Red Flag warning has been issued for parts of San Diego County ahead of a Santa Ana wind event expected to move in Thursday.

The red flag warning goes into effect from 5 a.m. Thursday to 5 p.m. Friday for San Diego County’s inland valleys and mountains, the National Weather Service said.

East to northeast winds 25 to 35 miles per hour with gusts up to 50 miles per hour are forecast. Winds will be the strongest below the Cajon Pass and in the Santa Ana Mountains, according to the agency.

Lowest daytime humidity will reach 5 to 10 percent with poor overnight recovery.

RELATED: How to prepare for a fire in San Diego County

The low humidity is expected to continue into Saturday, but with weaker and less widespread winds. Greater humidity recovery will move in Sunday as onshore flow strengthens.

Ahead of the expected winds, San Diego Gas and Electric Tuesday night notified nearly 24,000 people that their power could be shut off.

Check out the list of affected communities below:

  • Alpine
  • Barona
  • Barrett Lake
  • Boulevard
  • Campo
  • Cuyamaca
  • Descanso
  • East Poway
  • East Valley Center
  • Julian
  • Mesa Grande
  • Mount Laguna
  • Palomar Mountain
  • Pine Valley
  • Potrero
  • Ramona
  • Rancho Bernardo (portions of)
  • Santa Ysabel
  • Shelter Valley
  • Viejas
  • Warner Springs

Click here for updates from SDG&E.

San Diego County fire agencies also increased staffing amid Santa Ana wind conditions.

The Cleveland National Forest said Monday it brought in more than 130 firefighters from northern California, Oregon, and Idaho to staff fire stations in San Diego, Riverside and Orange counties.

"Typically, 99 percent of fire starts are kept to under 5 acres thanks to the quick response of our firefighters, but when more frequent fire starts are common, increased staffing allows us to minimize the potential for a large wildfire to occur" Forest Supervisor Scott Tangenberg said in a statement.

San Diego Fire-Rescue has five stations equipped with an engine, ladder truck, and fully-staffed brush truck while dangerous fire conditions persist.

RELATED: Check today's San Diego County forecast

"Our brush rigs are always able to be covered," San Diego Fire-Rescue Deputy Chief Kelly Zombro said. "We just have to un-staff a rig to move over to it. In this case, those rigs are actually covered right now, and they can all go."

The fire weather also comes as temperatures in the region climb.

Monday, parts of San Diego County were listed among hottest places in the U.S.

According to the National Weather Service, the San Pasqual Valley hit 97 degrees while Escondido and Santee each hit 96.

San Diego also hit 88 degrees, marking the hottest day of the year to date.

Meanwhile, temperatures in Anaheim soared to 98 degrees, making it the hottest place in America on Monday.