The full story by the Oakland Tribune is below:
By William Brand, Staff Writer,
Article Last Updated: 08/27/2008 10:46:10
Red flag fire warning for East Bay hills today
It's a familiar
story this time of year of the Bay Area. The combination of hot winds blowing
out of the Central Valley, rising temperatures and bone dry conditions has
caused the National Weather Service to issue a Red Flag fire warning
The fire-danger warning is for the Diablo Range and the North Bay and
East Bay Hills, especially the southernmost East Bay hills near San Jose, the
Weather Service said. Temperatures are expected to hit 102 degrees in Livermore
and Concord this afternoon; even next to the bay, Oakland can expect 90 degrees.
Tomorrow's going to be even warmer, up to 104 in the Concord -
Pleasanton-Livermore corridor and about 92 in Oakland, the Weather Service says.
Air quality's also dicey and the Bay Area Air Quality Management District
has declared Wednesday a Spare the Air Day.
Unfortunately, there's no more
money for free transit today. But the air board urges residents to drive less,
consider telecommuting, working from home instead of driving to
"Concentrations of ground-level ozone pollution are forecast to be
unhealthy today," the air board said. "Hot temperatures and light winds will
combine to produce poor air quality for the entire Bay Area."
It's the low
humidity and the offshore winds from the northeast that cause concern, Weather
Service meteorologist Larry Smith said.
"During the day humidity can often
drop to between 11 and 21 percent," Smith said. "In the nighttime things usually
cool off and the humidity goes up. But last night it only brought the humidity
up to 18 to 29 percent.
"That's still fairly low and another concern is the
wind today out of the east-northeast. We're forecasting five to 15miles per hour
with gusts to 20 miles per hour," Smith said.
"That's not dangerous by
itself. But if a fire starts the wind would aid in expanding the fire," he
Firefighters remain on high alert. A sparking cable started a grass
fire this morning beside I-680 in Fremont. But firefighters, alerted by the
California Highway Patrol had it out in a few minutes.
The Red Flag warning
also is in effect for the Sacramento Valley as far north as Shasta County and
south into the Central Valley and the surrounding foothills and the Sierra,
Daniel Berlant, spokesman for the California Department of Forestry said.
urge everyone to be cautious," he said. "We have the four -five day Labor Day
weekend coming up and lots of people will be going into the hills and the
mountains. We're asking people to be cautious and remember that any kind of
spark can cause a wildfire," he said.