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Threat Of Wildfires Increases With Heat Wave

Audio

Aired 7/15/10

The heat wave is expected to last through the weekend. KPBS Reporter Erik Anderson says the hot, dry conditions are already increasing the threat of wildfires.

San Diego county has only had summer-like weather for a few days, but the hot, dry conditions are already increasing the threat of wildfires here.

June gloom hung on well into July this year, but the cloudy morning skies disappeared this week.

California fire officials say that significantly raises the risk of a wildfire in the region. CAL FIRE's Julie Hutchinson says the cool weather helped keep the threat of wildfires down, but it also created perfect growing conditions for grass. It dries out quickly in the summer heat creating a flash fuel.

Hutchinson says this year's fire season has been slow so far, however, San Diego County has had several flare-ups since the warm weather returned.

The largest is the 3,000 acre fire on Camp Pendleton that was contained this morning. It started on a military training range away from structures, but hot temperatures and dry vegetation helped it spread quickly.

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