Sonoma County emergency alert exercise cancelled due to wildfire concerns

An emergency alert and warning exercise scheduled for Tuesday in Santa Rosa and Sonoma County has been cancelled due to fire weather concerns in the North Bay mountains during the next 48 to 72 hours. 

It was cancelled by the city, the county and the National Weather Service, the latter of which has called for a red flag warning for the North Bay mountains and upper elevations of Sonoma County from 5 p.m. Sunday to 5 p.m. Monday. 

The warning is based on a chance of dry thunderstorms with the potential for what is called cloud-to-ground lightning, according to the most recent weather forecast for the region. 

Meteorologists with the weather service said Saturday that the weather conditions during the next two days, combined with dry vegetation conditions, has the potential for starting new wildfires. 


Tuesday's cancelled exercise would have included a NOAA weather radio warning alarm system test for Sonoma County and a county test -- known as a SoCoAlert test -- in a targeted geographical area of Santa Rosa. 

The test of both systems will be rescheduled.