Red Flag Warning Issued as SCE Considers Power Shutoffs for More Than 41K Customers Amid High Winds, Fire Risk

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Strong winds were expected to sweep through parts of Southern California Saturday, elevating wildfire risks as SoCal Edison considered cutting power for up to 41,055 customers in eight counties. The National Weather Service expanded a red flag warning to include the Los Angeles County, Santa Monica and Ventura County mountains and San Fernando and Santa Clarita valleys, in addition to the Santa Barbara County mountains and south coast. The dry and windy weather conditions might lead to “very rapid fire spread and extreme fire behavior” if any new blazes ignite in those areas over the weekend, NWS said. The warning will remain in effect until 10 p.m. Sunday. The Real Fire near Goleta burned 420 acres of land and is now 50% contained. Powerful “sundowner winds” with damaging gusts up to 60 mph are forecast to blow through the region Saturday night and Sunday morning. Residents in Montecito Hills and the Tejon Pass might also get isolated gusts up to 75 mph, according to NWS. Damaging northerly winds are expected in the I-5 corridor, as well as in wind prone coastal and valley areas of Los Angeles County. Almost 11,500 customers could lose power in Santa Clarita and some unincorporated Los Angeles County areas including Canyon Country, Little Rock, Sun Village, Acton, Castaic and Chatsworth, according to Edison. The utility is also considering cutting electricity in parts of Inyo, Kern, Mono, Orange, San Bernardino, Santa Barbara and Ventura counties as dry conditions were expected to persist throughout the weekend. Click here for an updated list and maps of communities that could be affected by the wildfire prevention measure. The Saddleridge Fire, which charred 8,799 acres, or 13.7 square miles, of land and forced the evacuation of thousands, is believed to have started on Oct. 10, below a SoCal Edison transmission line in Sylmar amid high winds. The fire was 78% contained Saturday evening. Edison customers were encouraged to sign up for power shutoff and outage alerts online. KTLA’s Brian Day contributed to this report.

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