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Contra Costa County declares local emergency amid fires, downed trees

Contra Costa County has declared a local emergency due to severe weather conditions that have prompted numerous area vegetation fires and resulted in significant wind damage, including downed trees. One 30-foot tree injured several people Sunday morning at the Martinez Farmers’ Market.

Susan Shiu, a spokeswoman for the county, said that this declaration should increase the potential for Contra Costa County to receive funding from the state to help pay for the costs of fighting local fires and dealing with other weather-caused problems.

The proclamation, signed by County Administrator David J. Twa, states:

“[C]onditions of extreme peril to the safety of persons and property have arisen within the county, caused by a severe weather event commencing at 8 p.m. (Saturday). The velocity and duration of wind, coupled with low humidity, is driving wildfires in multiple locations, causing power disruptions, tree falls and infrastructure damage, and necessitating evacuations; and that these conditions are or are likely to be beyond the control of the services, personnel, equipment and facilities of the county.”

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