Red Flag Conditions in Northern California

With High Winds and Red Flag Conditions, Cal OES Pre-Positions Critical Firefighting Resources and Personnel in Northern California, Bay Area

In preparation for dangerous fire weather conditions, including high winds, anticipated to impact Northern California and Bay Area counties, the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) is strategically pre-positioning critical fire response resources to include strike teams of fire engines, firefighters, water tenders and emergency dispatchers in the designated impacted areas.

These resources and personnel are staffing up into position as early as this evening and into tomorrow. The pre-positioned fire resources and emergency personnel include:

  • Napa County Operational Area – one strike team of local government Type III fire engines and one local government dispatcher
  • Marin County Operational Area – one local government task force including four Type III local government engines and one local government water tender and one emergency dispatcher
  • Sonoma County Operational Area – one strike team of local government Type III fire engines, one RedCom emergency dispatcher
  • Lake County Operational Area – one local government task force four Type II and Type III fire engines, and a local government water tender
  • Contra Costa County Operational Area – one local government task force of Type I and Type III fire engine, one local government water tender, and one emergency dispatcher
  • Alameda County Operational Area – one OES strike team of Type III fire engines, one local government water tender from within Alameda County

All pre-positioned resources are expected to remain in place until fire weather conditions improve in the region. Additional resources could be staffed up as well, depending on the weather conditions across the state.

A strike team includes five fire engines with 15 firefighters and a strike team leader. For more information on Cal OES Fire Regions, click here. A task force is five fire resources of different types/vehicles, such as four fire engines and one water tender make up a single task force.

The National Weather Service is forecasting low relative humidity and winds gusting up to 50 miles per hour or higher in isolated areas, creating Red Flag weather conditions over parts of the North Bay Hills in Northern California well into Wednesday night.

A Red Flag Warning means that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now or will soon. A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity, and warm temperatures can contribute to extreme fire potential and erratic fire behavior.

Click here to see the National Weather Service’s Red Flag warnings.

The public is urged is remain aware of their surrounding conditions and to avoid outdoor activities that can cause a spark near dry vegetation, such as yard work, target shooting, or campfires and follow local fire restrictions. Also, remember to have an emergency plan in place, emergency preparedness kits at home and vehicles full of fuel; sign-up for emergency alerts; listen to authorities and warnings and be prepared to evacuate if necessary.

The Cal OES Warning Center and State Operations Center will monitor conditions and be ready for further resource requests as necessary throughout the Red Flag period.

For more from Cal OES, visit and follow us on Twitter @Cal_OES.

Shawn Boyd

Shawn Boyd joined Cal OES as a public information officer in 2014 after a 20-year career in television news as a reporter, anchor and executive producer. He's a Cal State Sacramento alum and former US Navy yeoman and Air Force brat.

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