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The Latest: Southern California gets heat, wind, fires

Visitors fly a kite at Natural Bridges State Beach Wednesday, Oct. 19, 2016, in Santa Cruz, Calif. Santa Ana winds gusted out of the mountains of Southern California on Wednesday, driving up temperatures and raising the danger of wildfires in the drought-stricken region. Much of the rest of the state, including the San Francisco Bay Area and the Central Valley, was also expected to have above-normal temperatures, although no red flag warnings were posted in those regions. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
October 19, 2016 - 3:32 PM

LOS ANGELES - The Latest on Southern California's fall heat wave and fire danger (all times local):

3:25 p.m.

Los Angeles firefighters are battling another small wildfire in brown hills above San Fernando Valley neighbourhoods amid gusty, hot and dry Santa Ana winds.

Numerous helicopters and two Super Scooper airplanes are dropping water on flames in the Lake View Terrace area Wednesday afternoon.

Earlier, small brush fires in the Porter Ranch and Granada Hills areas were held in check.

Santa Ana winds have historically been involved in spreading some of Southern California's worst wildfires.


10:40 a.m.

Gusty Santa Ana winds are raising temperatures and fire danger in Southern California.

The National Weather Service says temperatures at midmorning Wednesday are up 5 degrees to 20 degrees from the same time Tuesday.

The day's highs are expected to range from the 80s at the beaches to the 90s inland. The heat wave is expected to peak Thursday with some locations reaching 100.

The Santa Anas raise fire danger because of their speed and dryness, which lowers humidity levels and moisture levels in fuels. A 67 mph gust was recorded in Santa Barbara County.

Overnight, firefighters jumped on a brush fire in the Porter Ranch area of Los Angeles County and held it to less than 30 acres.


Rugged peaks of the Sierra Nevada have a dusting of snow from an autumn storm that brought Yosemite Falls back to life, but it's not time for sweaters and hot chocolate everywhere in California.

The notorious Santa Ana winds typical of fall in Southern California are forecast to bring a heat wave and high fire danger through the end of the week.

Temperatures in the hottest areas were predicted to soar into the 90s to around 100 degrees Wednesday through Friday.

Forecasters said Thursday would likely be the peak of the heat, but conditions were expected to remain hot and dry into week's end.

While not quite as hot, the forecast for much of the rest of the state calls for warming to levels above normal.

News from © The Associated Press, 2016
The Associated Press

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