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Strong winds expected to sweep across North Bay

The North Bay likely will be hit Sunday and Monday with its strongest wind gusts since last October, when devastating wildfires swept the region, the National Weather Service warned Sunday afternoon.

Residents should prepare for high fire dangers through Monday resulting from low relative humidity and strong, gusty winds. Isolated gusts could reach around 70 mph in the North Bay mountains Sunday night into Monday morning, the weather service said.

The threat of fires also will be high in the East Bay hills, with wind gusts of up to 30 mph. Relative humidity levels in the North and East bays are expected to drop this afternoon to around 10 percent and recover overnight to only around 20 percent. A red flag warning is in effect for the North and East Bay mountains and hills.

“The greatest threat continues to be in the higher elevations of Napa County and Sonoma County, where the driest conditions and strongest winds are likely,” the weather service said in an advisory. “Any fires that start will spread rapidly.”

PG&E is notifying customers that it may shut off power in portions of 12 counties if fire dangers dictate. It plans to send automated voice messages, texts and emails to customers alerting them to potentially extreme weather conditions and high wildfire dangers starting this evening through Monday morning.

Wind speeds are forecast to drop slightly on Monday, the weather service said, but mild and dry conditions are expected to persist into the first half of next week.

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