Gusting winds and low humidity will combine to create an elevated threat of wildfires in much of Los Angeles County this week, with the most severe conditions expected Wednesday, forecasters said today.
The National Weather Service issued a fire weather watch for Wednesday morning and afternoon, but forecasters also noted that conditions on Tuesday and Thursday could prompt some red flag fire warnings.
"A trough of low pressure near Oregon is expected to drop south into Eastern California by Wednesday," according to an NWS advisory. "This will bring gusty offshore flow Tuesday through Thursday, peaking on Wednesday and focusing over Los Angeles and Ventura counties."
Forecasters said the system will bring the potential for sustained winds of 30 to 45 mph, with some gusts reaching 65 mph. The humidity level will likely rise slightly on Tuesday night, particularly in the mountains, but then dip below 15 percent throughout much of the day Wednesday, according to the NWS.
"Despite the initial higher humidities, the strong wind potential will bring a potential for extreme fire behavior if a fire started," according to the NWS. "While not part of the watch, Tuesday and Thursday are periods of high fire weather concern, with a few hours of widespread red flag conditions expected."
The fire weather watch, which indicates a forecast that includes critical fire weather conditions, will be in effect Wednesday in the Santa Monica Mountains Recreational Area, Angeles National Forest, Los Angeles County mountains, coastal areas stretching to downtown Los Angeles and the Santa Clarita and San Fernando valleys.
—City News Service