A chance of dry lightning hitting the Bay Area Monday prompted the National Weather Service to issue a red flag warning for fire danger, a forecaster said.
The low-pressure front moving into the region Sunday afternoon brings a chance of showers, isolated thunderstorms and dry lightning through Tuesday, National Weather Service forecaster Bob Benjamin said.
Lightning strikes combined with extremely dry conditions across inland hills and valleys could bring significant fire danger, prompting the red flag warning for counties in the North and East Bay across San Mateo County to the Santa Cruz Mountains, Benjamin said.
Though there is a 20 to 30 percent chance of rain accompanying the front, there is “little chance of rain ever hitting the surface,” Benjamin said.
On Sunday, Cal Fire called in five extra firefighters and staffed its water tankers and reserve engines.
Cal Fire officials said they have modified response calls to keep crews free in case lightning sparks flames.
Cal Fire Battalion Chief Jamie Norton said Sunday that the last time conditions came together like this was back in 2008 -- a year when lightning caused quite a few fires.
Norton said that crews were keeping close tabs on remote areas of Henry Coe Park in Morgan Hill until the warning ends.
“It's just a huge area which hasn't burned in 7 years and it's just really concerning out there,” said Norton. “The fuels are very receptive for fire right now and we don't have the resources that we would need given the current condition in the rest of the state.”
The red flag warning went into effect at midnight Monday and would remain in effect until noon on Tuesday.
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