Santa Ana Winds Create Fire Danger, Possible Outages on Thanksgiving

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - Another round of Santa Ana winds buffeted the Southland Thursday, raising concerns of possible wildfires and power outages.

A wind advisory was in effect from 3 p.m. Thursday to 11 a.m. Friday in the mountains and the San Fernando and Santa Clarita valleys, from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday in the Orange County coastal areas, and until 10 a.m. Friday in inland Orange County.

Sustained winds of 25 to 45 mph were expected Thursday in some of those areas, with gusts up to 60 mph in the valleys and 75 mph in the Los Angeles County mountains, diminishing to 50 mph Thursday night, according to the National Weather Service.

"Damaging winds could blow down large objects such as trees and power lines," according to the NWS. "Power outages are possible. Travel could be difficult, especially for high profile vehicles."

Gusts of 91 mph were recorded Thursday morning at the Magic Mountain Truck Trail, and 68 mph at Browns Canyon south of the Ronald Reagan (118) Freeway in the Chatsworth area.

A red flag warning for fire danger was in effect for much of Los Angeles and Ventura counties through Friday morning, with elevated to brief critical fire weather conditions possible Friday and Saturday due to gusty winds and low humidity.

"This Santa Ana event will be a bit more out of the east than recent events leading to more of a focus on the western San Fernando Valley and western portions of the Santa Monica mountains," the NWS said. "... There is a smaller window of critical conditions for coastal areas along and west of Malibu into Coastal Ventura County centered on the daytime Thursday."

With a fire weather watch taking effect, forecasters urged residents in fire-prone areas to begin preparing right away for possibly blazes that could force evacuations. The NWS urged residents to visit or for tips on preparing for blazes.

Meanwhile, Southern California Edison said Public Safety Power Shutoffs were being considered for 7,584 customers in Los Angeles County as a precaution against wildfires. No shutoffs had been issued in LA County as of 1:30 p.m. Thursday, but SCE did shut off power for 5,872 customers in Riverside County and 3,179 customers in Ventura County.

More information can be found at outage-status.

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