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Fire Departments Beef Up Staffing On South Coast As Santa Ana Winds Arrive In Force

(Ventura County Air Unit photo)
Ventura County Air Unit helicopters at their base in Camarillo

The Santa Ana wind has arrived on parts of the Central and South Coasts, leading to potentially dangerous brush fire conditions for our region. The biggest concern is in Ventura and Los Angeles Counties. There’s a Red Flag Warning for all of Ventura County, and parts of LA County through Friday, with wind from 40 to 60 miles an hour range possible.

The humidity has dropped to the single digits in spots. The Ventura County Fire Department beefed up its staffing Thursday, adding an extra 15 engines, seven hand crews and two helicopters to improve the chances of quickly stopping brush fires which might occur.

Wind in the 20 to 40 mile an hour range is predicted in Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties. It’s not enough to trigger a Red Flag Warning, but there is still increased brush fire potential.

Even in spots where wind isn’t a problem, heat is an issue, with a number of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo County communities getting into the 90’s Thursday.

The wind and heat are expected to drop off slightly Friday, with significant relief is expected on Saturday.