1st red flag warning points to fire season
Fire season is under way, and the Bay Area just received its first red flag warning.
The warning from the National Weather Service runs from 10 p.m. Sunday through 8 p.m. Monday for mountains at elevations of 1,000 feet or higher in parts of Marin, Sonoma and Napa counties.
A triple punch of high temperatures, low humidity and strong winds is expected to increase fire danger.
“Once rain season is kind of over, we head into fire season,” said Anna Schneider, meteorologist for the National Weather Service’s Bay Area office. “We’re expecting critical fire weather conditions to be occurring with strong enough winds and low enough relative humidity, as well as dry fields, which can lead to extreme fire behavior.”
Schneider said north and northeast winds are expected to pick up Sunday evening, with gusts of 30 to 40 mph Sunday night and reaching up to 50 mph at higher peaks. The humidity will range from 15% to 25%, according to the Marin County
Residents should properly discard cigarettes, be cautious while operating machinery, be careful of flames and obey fire bans, Schneider said. Since no thunderstorms are forecast, any fires are likely to be sparked by human activity, she added.
In Marin County, open burning and burn permits on public lands are suspended. Some highelevation road and parking lot closures are in effect, including roads on the way to Mount Tamalpais State Park north of Panoramic Highway; the county says roads will be closed to vehicles on Pan toll Road and Ridgecrest Boulevard until 7 a.m. on Tuesday. Winds were gusting at 37 miles per hour on Mount Tamalpais Sunday evening.