La Niña winter weather: How it could impact California wildfires

SANTA CLARA, Calif. (KGO) -- Some anticipated weather systems could calm wildfire activity and possibly impact next year as well.

In California there's no such thing as fire "season."

"Fire is a year round problem," said Dwight Good, Assistant Chief of the CalFire Santa Clara Unit. Largely driven by the weather, according to Good.

RELATED: 3 large fires break out within 8 hours in San Jose

"Weather matters to firefighting like weather matters to a farmer," he continued.

We could see some relief soon. There's rain in the forecast.

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Extremely dry air and light winds help our highs reach the lower 70s to upper 80s. Overnight lows dip into the 40s and 50s.



"Once we get closer to the event we'll really be able to nail down where this rainfall will happen and how much will occur. Right now there's just a potential for a pretty healthy rainstorm," said ABC7 Meteorologist Mike Nicco.

But Nicco says we don't want too much of a good thing.

"If too much rain falls on those burn scars then we could have the potential for flooding," said Nicco.

RELATED: Several Bay Area neighborhoods jump to 'exceptional' drought category

Nicco says more likely than not, we'll be looking at another dry winter. While El Niño brings wet weather, La Niña, which is this year's system, means dry.

"La Niña's about 75% of the time come back to back, so if you just take last year and extrapolate it or move it forward to this winter, it is not looking well. We could be looking at a whole year of heightened fire danger again," said Nicco.

"That's not the news we would hope for. I don't know how much drier it can get. We're frankly off the charts on fire behavior, no one has ever seen conditions like this," said Good.

Good encourages homeowners to remove dead, downed, dry materials from around their property and cut the grass.

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