Santa Ana Winds, Triple-Digit Heat To Increase Fire Risk In San Diego
Fire danger is expected to increase throughout San Diego County starting Thursday and continuing through Sunday as hot temperatures and weak to moderate Santa Ana winds arrive to the region, according to the National Weather Service in San Diego.
Weather officials are forecasting temperatures in the low 100s in the inland valleys and near 90 along the coast, with humidity remaining extremely low.
“It’s going to be comparable to the heat wave we had earlier this month,” said Alex Tardy, warning coordination meteorologist with the National Weather Service in San Diego.
The only difference this time, Tardy said, is there will not be monsoonal moisture. “This is going to be more of a classic fall event where it’s very dry,” he said.
Tardy said Santa Ana winds could gust to 50 miles per hour in some localized mountain passes and valleys, including Banning Pass and along Interstate 8.
First responders and the public will be alerted to the potential for dangerous fire conditions through the region’s new online weather monitoring system, Santa Ana Wildfire Threat Index.
The system, launched last month by SDG&E, UCLA and the U.S. Forest Service, gauges the severity of Santa Ana wind events in five threat levels. Each level directs the public on what actions to take.
Tardy said localized wind warnings will also likely also be issued.
A slow cool down is expected to take effect on Sunday.