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Red flag, high surf warnings issued

  • Sebastopol firefighters mop up the scene of a brush fire that spread in to a compost pile east of Sebastopol, Wednesday Jan. 22, 2014. The critically dry conditions have exacerbated fire danger, prompting the National Weather service to post red flag fire warnings for elevations above 1,500 feet starting Wednesday night in to Thursday morning. (Kent Porter / Press Democrat) 2014

A red flag warning is back, alerting the public and firefighters to an increased chance of fire.

This latest warning is slated for 10 p.m. Wednesday through 3 p.m. Thursday in the North Bay hills.

The warning was issued by the National Weather Service when a combination of worrisome weather conditions arise.

Drying north- to northeast winds are expected to build tonight, making the extremely dry grass and brush covering the county's hillsides even more flammable, according to a press release from Ryan Walbrun, meteorologist with the weather service.

Rain remains out of the current forecast as January heads into its final week with only traces having fallen in the winter month.

While residents of the northeast were hit Wednesday with another massive snow storm, residents of California and throughout the southwest continue to endure a drought and weeks of freezing mornings and balmy afternoons.

Meanwhile, a high surf advisory also was issued for the Sonoma Coast south to Monterey County.

The surf advisory was set for Thursday morning through Friday evening.

The waves initially will be small but they'll move fast, Walbrun said.

Waves will continue to build, leading to a high surf. These larger waves will result in strong rip currents and a heightened risk of sneaker waves, especially on steeper beaches, said Walbrun.


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