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Red flag warnings, air quality alerts extend around Bay Area riddled with heat, smoke

The National Weather Service extended and expanded its Red Flag Warning Thursday due to fire concerns in the Bay Area as temperatures are expected to remain in the 90s and 100s through Friday.

The weather service initially issued a Red Flag Warning starting at 1 p.m. Thursday in the North Bay, where the nearly 57,000-acre Glass Fire continues to burn.

That warning has now been extended through 6 a.m. Saturday and includes elevations above 1,000 feet in the East Bay hills, the Diablo Range, the Santa Cruz Mountains and Los Padres National Forest, where the Dolan Fire is burning.

The heat wave that has contributed to the fires as well as poor air quality in much of the Bay Area also spurred the Bay Area Air Quality Management District to extend its Spare the Air alert through at least Tuesday.

As a result, burning wood, manufactured fire logs or other solid fuels will remain temporarily banned during the alert window to prevent excess particulate air pollution.

Alert Wildfire Smoke-filled view from Allen Peak near Portola Valley, Calif. on Thursday, Oct. 1, 2020.

Jack Broadbent, BAAQMD CEO said:

“The Bay Area will experience significant smoke impacts into next week as the Glass Fire continues to burn in the North Bay. Unhealthy air and hot temperatures make protecting our health more difficult.”

On Wednesday, the California Independent System Operator, which oversees the state’s power grid, issued a statewide Flex Alert, requesting that state residents reduce their power usage from 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday to prevent power outages.

Thursday afternoon temperatures are expected to peak in the 90s along the San Francisco Bayshore, between 95 and 100 degrees in the Santa Clara Valley and between 95 and 105 in the North Bay, Santa Cruz Mountains, Salinas Valley and inland areas of the East Bay and southern Monterey County.

Winds are also expected to range from 10 to 20 mph north to northwest, with gusts up to 30 mph, in the North Bay region, the Santa Cruz Mountains, Diablo Range, East Bay and Los Padres National Forest.

Some counties plan to open community cooling centers to help residents avoid heat-related illnesses like heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

Cooling centers can be found across Santa Clara County at:

  • Campbell from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday and Friday at the Campbell Community Center at 1 W. Campbell Ave.
  • Cupertino from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Cupertino Senior Center, located at 21251 Stevens Creek Blvd.
  • Gilroy from noon to 6 p.m. at the Gilroy Library, located at 350 W. Sixth St.
  • Milpitas from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday and Friday at the Barbara Lee Senior Center, located at 40 N. Milpitas Blvd.
  • Palo Alto from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday and Friday at the Mitchell Park Community Center, located at 3700 Middlefield Road
  • Santa Clara from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Santa Clara Senior Center, located at 1303 Fremont St.
  • Saratoga from noon to 6 p.m. at the Saratoga Library, located at 13650 Saratoga Ave.
  • San Jose from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Camden Community Center, located at 3369 Union Ave., and the Vietnamese American Community Center, located at 2072 Lucretia Ave., and from 1 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Joyce Ellington Branch Library, located at 491 E. Empire St.

Santa Clara County residents can find additional information about staying cool during the heat wave at

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