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Fire resources boosted after forecast of Santa Ana winds

FiresWildfiresNational Weather ServiceWeather Watches

Firefighters across Southern California and other parts of the state will be pre-deploying near mountain and brush areas and staffing additional units during several days of extreme fire weather expected to begin Thursday.

A red flag fire warning for strong to moderate Santa Ana winds and low relative humidity has been issued across Southern California, the National Weather Service said.

The agency said temperatures will be in the 90s in inland areas and that wind gusts up to 70 mph are possible for mountains in Ventura and Los Angeles counties through Sunday.

The Los Angeles County Fire Department will be staffing 22 additional firefighter positions as well as two strike teams of fire engines and lighter brush patrol trucks, Inspector Anthony Akins said.

Southern California wildfires: Full coverage

The department will also have additonal water tenders and other resources in areas including Malibu and the Santa Clarita Valley.

Red flag warnings and fire weather watches have also been issued for the Bay Area, the Sacramento Valley and northeastern California.

The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection said it will beef up its stations across the state so that frefighters will be ready for an aggressive attack if wildfires break out.

Since January, the agency said, it has responded to more than 5,600 wildfires that have scorched more than 146,000 acres.

Cal Fire Chief Ken Pimlott said vegetation is dangerously dry.

"When you add in strong winds," he said, "it makes this time of year a perfect recipe for wildfires."

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robert.lopez@latimes.com

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