Wildfire Threat Remains High on Another Day of Powerful Wind

Fire weather warnings are in effect for a widespread part of Southern California

What to Know

  • Moderate winds will pick up by mid-morning and into Tuesday afternoon
  • A red flag warning for most of Los Angeles County will be in effect until about 8 p.m.
  • Utility crews restored power to thousands of customers by early Tuesday

After a day of power outages and damaging Santa Ana winds that topped trees and left debris scattered in streets, Southern California faces high fire danger and another round of powerful wind gusts. 

Moderate winds will pick up by mid-morning and into Tuesday afternoon, said NBC4 forecaster Shanna Mendiola. Foothill and mountain area can expect northeast gusts up to 45 to 55 mph. Coastal and valley communities are in for gusts up to 45 mph.

"We're starting off with fire threats again," said Mendiola "Santa Ana winds came in with full force yesterday. They won't be quite as strong as yesterday, but you'll notice that the air is dry."

The damaging winds combined with dry air to raise the threat of wildfires, prompting a red flag warning for most of Los Angeles County that will be in effect until about 8 p.m. The fire weather warning will be in effect in the San Gabriel Mountains, Angeles National Forest, Santa Monica Mountains Recreational Area, the San Fernando, Santa Clarita and San Gabriel valleys, the Los Angeles coast, downtown LA and the Hollywood Hills. No warning was in effect in the Antelope Valley.

Powerful gusts were reported Monday in Malibu (62 mph), the Newhall Pass (48 mph), Santa Fe Dam in the Irwindale area (52 mph) and Burbank (48 mph). At Los Angeles County Fire Department Camp 9 above Santa Clarita, a 66 mph gust was reported at about 8 a.m. The strongest wind gust was 75 mph, reported in Orange County's Fremont Canyon.

October is historically the worst month for wildfires in California. Seven of the state's most destructive wildfires on record have occurred in October, including the deadly 2017 Northern California wildfires.

SCE officials warned electric circuits in some high-risk fire areas might be shut off, a measure that's part of a new state policy allowing for protective blackouts. A spokesman for SCE said neighborhoods in foothill communities from Santa Clarita to Pasadena could get their electricity shut off.

Areas served by the LADWP were not part of the intentional blackout warnings.

At one point Monday afternoon, more than 87,000 Southern California Edison and the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power customers were affected by power outages. Early Tuesday morning, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power reported that 1,760 customers were still without power throughout the city due to high winds. After restoring nearly all power, a new outage affecting about 500 customer was reported at about 3 a.m. in Sherman Oaks.

Southern California Edison reported 3,500 customers in Los Angeles County and 470 customers in Orange County were without power early Tuesday. About 3,980 customers in Riverside and 1,600 in San Bernardino counties were without power early Tuesday.

Click here for SCE's outage map.

In Tustin, a woman inside a car was killed when a tree fell on the vehicle parked outside a home.

Some Orange County parks were closed due to high winds, including Irvine Regional Park & Orange County Zoo, Yorba Regional Park, Peters Canyon Regional Park, Santiago Oaks Regional Park and Mason Regional Park.

In Riverside County, mountain areas, foothills and the Coachella Valley are under red flag warnings. 

In Northern California, Pacific Gas & Electric began cutting power Sunday night due to extreme fire danger. PG&E previously announced its plan to shut off power preemptively after authorities blamed its power lines for sparking some of California's most destructive wildfires. 

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