Winds Push Fire Danger to Critical Levels Monday

Published : Monday, October 15, 2018 | 4:50 AM

Forecasters say Pasadena weather changing abruptly Monday from chilly, damp and cloudy to sunny, warm and very windy with gusts of up to 60 miles per hour possible.

The Santa Ana conditions will all add up to extremely dangerous fire conditions, the National Weather Service and the Pasadena Fire Dept. agree.

“Although the [windy] weather is not reported to be as prevalent in Pasadena as compared to other jurisdictions, we do expect moderate to high fire danger,” Fire Dept. spokesperson Lisa Derderian said.

Fire Chief Bertral Washington said his personnel will maintain “heightened awareness,” increase patrols by on-duty staff, conduct specific public outreach and disseminate information dissemination and frequently monitor weather conditions on Monday.

Although Chief Washington has not declared Red Flag conditions for Pasadena on Monday, the National Weather Service did issue its own Red Flag warnings for Los Angeles and Ventura counties.

The warnings mean the strong Santa Ana winds could interact with very low humidity levels and dry fuel for a heightened potential for “very rapid fire spread and extreme fire behavior” which could threaten life and property, according to a NWS Los Angeles tweet Sunday.

The NWS issued a High Wind Warning in effect from midnight Sunday to 3 p.m. Monday, which indicates a potential for north to northeast winds of 25 to 40 mph with gusts to 60 mph late Sunday, increasing to 30 to 45 mph with gusts to 65 mph on Monday, and isolated gusts up to 75 mph possible across western portions.

This kind of wind could down trees and power lines, causing property damage or power outages, the Warning said. Crosswinds can make driving difficult, especially for drivers of high profile vehicles and vehicles towing trailers.

As a precautionary measure, residents are advised to secure all loose outdoor furniture in advance of the onset of strong winds. Drivers are advised to use extra caution and be prepared for sudden gusty cross winds.

Monday should be sunny, with highs in the upper 70s to mid-80s, and northeast winds of about 20 to 30 mph and gusts to 45 mph. Monday night should be clear with lows in the mid-50s, and northeast winds of 15 to 25 mph.

Tuesday should be sunny, with highs in the lower to mid-80s and northeast winds of 15 to 25 mph and gusts up to 35 mph. Tuesday night should be clear with lows in the mid-50s.

Wednesday should be sunny, with highs in the upper 70s to mid-80s. Wednesday night should be clear, with lows in the mid-50s to around 60.

Thursday should be sunny, with highs in the upper 70s to mid-80s. Thursday night should be clear with lows around 60.

Friday should be sunny, with highs in the lower to mid-80s. Friday night should be clear with lows around 60.

Saturday should be sunny with highs in the 80s. Saturday night should be clear with lows in the upper 50s to mid-60s.

Sunday should be sunny, with highs in the lower to mid-80s.

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