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Fire Danger Inland Along Central Coast High This Month

August 3,2016-

The U.S. Forest Service-Pacific Southwest Region, Fire Information has released their monthly forecast for regions of California and things are heating up in the mid state. In Central California in August, look for enhanced fire danger inland on the coast according to predictions from the agency ( see map). By September the prediction is for increased fire danger in all parts of the Central Coast as well as Sierra.

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The hot weather that developed in late June continued through most of July. Temperatures last month averaged 4-6 degrees above normal over much of the area with readings over 100 degrees for several days in the valleys and lower foothills. The hot weather was accompanied by low RH across much of the interior sections of Central California. The southern part of the state generally had higher RH during the past month, mainly due to weak monsoon surges mixing with the marine layer.

Precipitation was generally below normal with the monsoon only producing one to two day events during each surge. Storm coverage and frequency, while greater than last year, could still be classified as below normal as most storms remained near the Arizona and Nevada borders. Southern California, in particular, experienced less precipitation this past July compared with other recent years.

The southwesterly flow aloft which dominated the spring, slowly shifted to more of a southerly direction during the past 30-40 days. High pressure was often located off the coast while a stronger ridge remained over the southern Rockies. This kept temperatures very warm, but the deep, sustained moisture often associated with southerly flow was absent much of the time. The monsoon started on a quite note, but as the tropics became increasingly loaded with moisture, heavy rains fell on the Southwest. But the high over the Southwest remained too far east to allow for more moisture from California.

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