Weather Change Doesn’t Mean Fire Season is Over

Weather patterns are beginning to change across California, and that could be a positive indication that early storms are possibly arriving to fight against the state’s historic six-year drought. But, even with rainfall expected to start later this week, that doesn’t mean the fire season is over.

In fact, October is often busiest for fires.

Ripe conditions are still present throughout the state, especially in Southern California. There has been a 27-percent increase of fires this year over a five-year average, consisting of 6,441 fires burning more than 555,000 acres combined.

In 2003, more than 500,000 acres burned in October alone.

As for impending wet weather, a significant pattern change is expected late this week, as a series of wet weather systems move into Northern California, according to the National Weather Service (NWS). The first part of the storm should arrive late Thursday and into Friday and again Saturday into Sunday.

The NWS says periods of heavy precipitation may lead to widespread urban ponding and localized flooding, impacting travel. Gusty winds may bring down small branches and weakened trees and also cause localized power outages.


For weather updates and additional resources on wildfires:



National Weather Service



Jonathan Gudel

Jonathan Gudel is a Public Information Officer for the California Governor's Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES). Since joining Cal OES, he has assisted in the response and recovery efforts of the Aliso Canyon Gas Leak, the state's historic drought, the Oroville Dam Emergency Spillway Incident, unprecedented winter storms in 2017, the October (Sonoma County) and December (Santa Barbara County) 2017 wildfires, and statewide wildfire siege in 2018 . Previously, he worked in the newspaper industry for 12 years.

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