SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) — Strong winds are expected to continue through Friday blowing at anywhere from 15-30 mph with gusts possibly reaching as high as 45 mph according to the National Weather Service’s Sacramento office.
Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) warned the public Thursday to be careful around downed trees and branches which could be concealing live electrical wires. PG&E said to assume all wires are energized and therefore dangerous.
As a result of strong wind and dry conditions, the National Weather Service has issued a Red Flag Warning from Redding to Modesto.
That Red Flag Warning also stretches into parts of Tuolumne County. Cal Fire said fire season has been starting earlier and ending later every year.
Just this week, the Tuolumne-Calaveras unit of Cal Fire suspended their burn program citing the “unusually early start to the fire season.”
Dore Bietz with Tuolumne County Office of Emergency Services said they’re monitoring the conditions and are ready to act if needed.
“Obviously working with our cooperators, our fire, with law enforcement, maybe Red Cross for sheltering, making sure that we’re ready in case there is an incident,” Bietz explained.
She said when there’s a Red Flag Warning residents also need to prepare to be a part of the solution and not the problem.
“Making sure you’re not out there mowing dry grass or any weeds. When you’re towing vehicles or a trailer, making sure that chains aren’t dragging and causing any kind of extra spark,” Bietz said.
Because of the lack of rain and snowpack this year, fire officials are anticipating and preparing for increased fire activity this season.
“We are concerned because it is early. We know that we have a lot to do and that expands that fire season. It used to be a really short period, and now that period has grown. So, that means we have to be much more vigilant,” Bietz said.