SoCal survived the wind; now facing wildfire warning

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The mishmash of Southland weather phenomenons continues today, as temperatures drop and the possibility of wildfires remains high, though the warning ends in a few hours.

Winds continue to gust at nearly 60 miles per hour, and this combined with low humidity levels creates prime conditions for wildfires. A red flag warning, issued by the National Weather Service, denotes a high risk of fire and is intended to warn firefighters that the weather is conducive to wildfires.

The warning is scheduled to be in force in Los Angeles, Ventura and Orange counties until 4 p.m. Tuesday.

National Weather Service meteorologists forecast winds of 35-45 miles per hour in mountain and forest areas, getting up to 50 mph, but generally weaker winds in valley and coastal areas. The humidity, they said, could plummet to 8 percent.

The strongest gust recorded this morning was 59 mph at Lake Palmdale in the Antelope Valley. The next four strongest were all in the Los Angeles County portion of the San Gabriel Mountains; 48 mph at Chilao, 46 mph at Camp Nine and 44 mph at both Warm Springs and Whitaker Peak, where a 97-mph gust was recorded during last week's windstorm.

The number of Southern California residents without power continues to dwindle, with less than 10,000 people still affected.

From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., SCE will operate two distribution centers for utility customers affected by the outages. People can pick up basic supplies, including flashlights, water and ice, based on availability.

The centers are in Altadena at the Altadena Community Center, 730 E. Altadena Drive; and in Arcadia, in the northeast corner of the parking lot at the Los Angeles County Regional Park at the corner of Huntington Drive and Santa Anita Avenue.

Officials were still deciding this morning whether two distribution centers that operated in Temple City Monday will be needed again today, said Vanessa McGrady of SCE.

San Gabriel Valley foothill communities appeared to take the brunt of last week's windstorm. Not so with the two-day wind event ending today. In fact, the San Gabriel Valley is one of the few areas of the Southland where no red flag alert has been declared.

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