'Be cautious': Cal Fire warns Bay Area residents of potential fire danger amid windy, dry conditions

ByRyan Curry KGO logo
Wednesday, February 2, 2022
Cal Fire chief warns of potential fire danger in Bay Area
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Cal Fire is asking Bay Area residents, especially in the North Bay, to be cautious of fire danger amid strong winds and dry weather.

NAPA, Calif. (KGO) -- Cal Fire has all of its base staff ready this week in the event a wildfire breaks out. Wind gusts throughout the Bay Area and Napa Valley are expected to be intense.

Cal Fire says these winds mixed with the dry weather can cause a fire to spread rapidly.

"We are at our base staffing and ready to respond to any wind-driven fire," said Tom Knecht, Division Chief for Napa Cal Fire. "We have a healthy concern for the wind, because we do have wind-driven fires in our history in January and February."

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Recently, a fire broke out in Big Sur. Winds caused that fire to spread.

Knecht says he wouldn't be surprised if something similar happens up north.

"We need people to be cautious right now," he said. "Be extra mindful of barbecues, wood fires and anything that can spark in dry grass."

RELATED: North Bay wildfire survivors hope federal funding will help prevent future disasters

Cal Fire has multiple trucks and a helicopter ready in-case a fire breaks out during this wind event. However, fires are not the only cause for concern. Fallen trees and downed powerlines are possibilities this week.

"Whenever we get kind of heavy winds rain fire, it kind of keeps me really busy," said Josh Gay, the owner of The Tree Guy, a tree service in the East Bay. "People are worried about possible abatement and just structural damage."

RELATED: 2 teens injured after high winds toppled tree in San Jose park

Gay says he already has appointments booked all week helping people trim trees in the event they fall this week.

Recently, in Oakland, winds caused trees to fall on cars and powerlines. Many residents went without power. Gay says he is trying to avoid a similar scenario.

"I tell people if they see a tree that doesn't look good, let someone know," he said. "It is always better to be safe in these kinds of conditions."