News

Heat wave, dry winds prompt Red Flag warning this weekend

PG&E contemplates power shutoffs; Contra Costa County not on list so far

High temperatures in the upper 90s and 100s are expected to blanket the Bay Area this weekend, prompting the National Weather Service to issue a Red Flag warning amid concern of new wildfires.

The warning that began Saturday evening has been extended through Monday evening, according to the NWS.

The warning, which applies to eastern Alameda and Contra Costa counties as well as portions of Napa and Sonoma counties and most of the Sacramento Valley and the Sierra Nevada foothills, was set to end at 9 a.m. Monday. But, changing weather conditions provoked forecasters to extend the warning until 9 p.m. Monday.

There will be critical fire conditions Saturday night through Monday for the North Bay coast and the East Bay hills and interior valleys, according to the National Weather Service.

Hot and dry temperatures will produce critical fire conditions and will increase heat-related risks.

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Wind gusts of up to 45 mph over the weekend and low humidity are expected to pair with the high temperatures to increase the danger of fires sparking along the Interstate 680 corridor, Highway 4 corridor and I-580 east of Altamont.

Firefighters across the state continue to battle 25 major wildfires, many of which were sparked during the last West Coast heat wave in mid-August, including the LNU and SCU Lightning Complex fires.

The LNU complex, which is burning in Napa, Sonoma, Solano, Lake, Colusa and Yolo counties, is 98% contained, according to Cal Fire.

The complex has burned an estimated 363,220 acres, to date.

The SCU complex, which has burned nearly 400,000 acres in Contra Costa, Alameda, Santa Clara, San Joaquin, Merced and Stanislaus counties, is also 98% contained, Cal Fire said Friday.

Neither fire complex is expected to grow during the heat wave, but firefighters continue their efforts to fully contain both complexes.

More than 8,000 wildfires across the state have burned more than 3.6 million acres combined in 2020, according to Cal Fire.

PG&E contemplates power shutoffs; Contra Costa County not on list so far

PG&E is keeping an eye on the weather forecast for northern California during this final September weekend, especially since the National Weather Service is forecasting potentially strong and dry offshore winds to begin early Sunday morning.

Due to the expected weather conditions, PG&E has begun notifying customers in regions of the state where the utility may find it necessary to proactively turn off electricity for safety -- to reduce wildfire risk from energized power lines.

In the Bay Area, the only region that may be affected is Napa County. Neighboring Lake County may also be affected, PG&E said. But, the impact would be minimal. Less than 200 PG&E customers could be affected in Napa County. In Lake County, the impact would be even less, with less than 100 customers being potentially impacted.

The potential Public Safety Power Shutoff, or PSPS, could impact approximately 97,000 customers in parts of 15 counties. In addition to Napa and Lake counties, customers in Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Kern, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Tehama and Yuba counties could be impacted.

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Heat wave, dry winds prompt Red Flag warning this weekend

PG&E contemplates power shutoffs; Contra Costa County not on list so far

Uploaded: Sat, Sep 26, 2020, 8:21 am
Updated: Sun, Sep 27, 2020, 11:31 am

High temperatures in the upper 90s and 100s are expected to blanket the Bay Area this weekend, prompting the National Weather Service to issue a Red Flag warning amid concern of new wildfires.

The warning that began Saturday evening has been extended through Monday evening, according to the NWS.

The warning, which applies to eastern Alameda and Contra Costa counties as well as portions of Napa and Sonoma counties and most of the Sacramento Valley and the Sierra Nevada foothills, was set to end at 9 a.m. Monday. But, changing weather conditions provoked forecasters to extend the warning until 9 p.m. Monday.

There will be critical fire conditions Saturday night through Monday for the North Bay coast and the East Bay hills and interior valleys, according to the National Weather Service.

Hot and dry temperatures will produce critical fire conditions and will increase heat-related risks.

Wind gusts of up to 45 mph over the weekend and low humidity are expected to pair with the high temperatures to increase the danger of fires sparking along the Interstate 680 corridor, Highway 4 corridor and I-580 east of Altamont.

Firefighters across the state continue to battle 25 major wildfires, many of which were sparked during the last West Coast heat wave in mid-August, including the LNU and SCU Lightning Complex fires.

The LNU complex, which is burning in Napa, Sonoma, Solano, Lake, Colusa and Yolo counties, is 98% contained, according to Cal Fire.

The complex has burned an estimated 363,220 acres, to date.

The SCU complex, which has burned nearly 400,000 acres in Contra Costa, Alameda, Santa Clara, San Joaquin, Merced and Stanislaus counties, is also 98% contained, Cal Fire said Friday.

Neither fire complex is expected to grow during the heat wave, but firefighters continue their efforts to fully contain both complexes.

More than 8,000 wildfires across the state have burned more than 3.6 million acres combined in 2020, according to Cal Fire.

PG&E contemplates power shutoffs; Contra Costa County not on list so far

PG&E is keeping an eye on the weather forecast for northern California during this final September weekend, especially since the National Weather Service is forecasting potentially strong and dry offshore winds to begin early Sunday morning.

Due to the expected weather conditions, PG&E has begun notifying customers in regions of the state where the utility may find it necessary to proactively turn off electricity for safety -- to reduce wildfire risk from energized power lines.

In the Bay Area, the only region that may be affected is Napa County. Neighboring Lake County may also be affected, PG&E said. But, the impact would be minimal. Less than 200 PG&E customers could be affected in Napa County. In Lake County, the impact would be even less, with less than 100 customers being potentially impacted.

The potential Public Safety Power Shutoff, or PSPS, could impact approximately 97,000 customers in parts of 15 counties. In addition to Napa and Lake counties, customers in Alpine, Amador, Butte, Calaveras, El Dorado, Kern, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Shasta, Sierra, Tehama and Yuba counties could be impacted.

— Bay City News Service

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