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Red Flag Warning

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Red Flag Warning indicating higher fire risk for Kensington, East Bay hills

A Red Flag Warning issued for the East Bay Hills and much of the East Bay means that hills residents need to be ready to evacuate and should take precautions to stop fires before they start. 

The Red Flag Warning announced by the National Weather Service lasts from, Saturday, April 9,  5:00 AM until Sunday, April 10, at 05:00 PM. 

Early Season Red Flag Warning…After a dry winter and early spring, grasses over portions of the Sacramento Valley are curing or drying well in advance of previous years. Given the unseasonably warm and dry conditions over the past few days and the expected strong winds and arid conditions this weekend, some larger swaths of grass in the Sacramento Valley could support relatively large or rapid fire spread. A quick return to cooler and showery weather is expected Monday and Tuesday, significantly reducing fire weather concerns. NOTE: This would be the earliest springtime Red Flag Warning issued by the Sacramento, CA office for interior northern California.

Fires that start during Red Flag Warnings can spread quickly. Use extreme caution when operating BBQs, power equipment, or other heat sources such as idling cars. Remember that fireworks are always completely forbidden in Contra Costa County and surrounding areas. These steps can help prevent fires. 

Wildfires are now more frequent, destructive, and fast-moving than ever. Kensington residents must change how to prepare and respond. Take control before a fire starts:

  • Leave your phone on to receive alerts even if you are sleeping, or activate your Emergency Bypass settings.
  • Know your evacuation zone and ensure you can receive messages issued through CWS and Nixle.
  • Put your Go Bag by the front door, or place it in your vehicle.
  • Plan multiple evacuation routes, including two by foot, if roads become too congested.
  • Park off-street. Back your car into your driveway or garage, leaving streets clear for emergency vehicles.
  • Be sure you can open your garage if the power goes out and keep pets close.
  • Red Flag Warnings are not as severe or as rare as "Extreme Fire Weather" days, a narrow range of weather conditions underlying many of California's most destructive fires. 

Late evacuation contributes to traffic jams and puts you, your neighbors, and first responders at risk. Leaving early increases your chance of survival. Preparing in advance puts you in the most control and is the best way to ensure your safety.

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