A Red Flag warning was in effect throughout Southern California on Monday as soaring temperatures, gusty Santa Ana winds and very low humidity prompted concerns over fire danger.
The warning went into effect on Sunday morning and was initially scheduled through 8 p.m. on Monday, according to the National Weather Service.
However, the weather service extended the Red Flag warning in the valley and mountain areas of Los Angeles and Ventura counties to Wednesday until 8 p.m.
Another Red Flag warning was scheduled go into effect 5 a.m. Tuesday and expire 8 p.m. Wednesday for the coastal areas of L.A. and Ventura counties.
A Red Flag warning was also in effect for coastal areas of Orange County, the Inland Empire and mountain areas in Riverside, San Bernardino and San Diego counties until 8 p.m. Tuesday.
The extension came as hot and dry conditions were expected for much of L.A., Ventura, Orange, Riverside and San Bernardino counties for most of the rest of the week.
Potentially record-breaking temperatures were expected to peak between Tuesday and Thursday. Highs were forecast to be in the 90s to around 100 in the valley, inland coastal plain and foothill areas.
Wind gusts of up to 40 to 50 mph were forecast in the mountain areas of L.A. and Ventura counties, while valley areas could expect gusts of up to 35 to 45 mph, according to the weather service.
Strong winds were forecast to hit near coastal foothills and below passes and canyons in Orange and San Bernardino counties, as well as on the north slopes of the Riverside County mountains.
Single-digit humidity was also expected through Friday.
In response to the dangerous conditions, the city of Los Angeles declared that Red Flag no parking restrictions would be in effect starting 8 a.m. on Tuesday and would remain in effect until further notice.
Forecasters warned the weather system would bring “extended period of dangerous fire weather conditions” to much of the area through at least Thursday.
“The fire danger will be elevated for much of the week, due to the hot, dry and windy condition,” the weather service’s website stated, adding that “extreme fire behavior” was possible if a blaze was ignited.
Because of the dangerous conditions, about 100 extra firefighters were on duty around L.A. County, mostly in Santa Clarita, Malibu and the foothill areas, L.A. County Fire Battalion Chief Doug LaCount said Sunday.
Fears over possible brush fires were realized Monday when a small fire broke out near mobile homes in an unincorporated area of Compton around 10:40 a.m.
Fire crews were able to extinguish the blaze, which charred 2 acres, according to the L.A. County Fire Department.
Initially, the fire was reported to have burned 3 to 4 acres.
It was declared to have been knocked down shortly before noon. However, crews would be mopping up for an additional 1 to 2 hours, according to the fire department.