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Red flag fire warning issued; lightning, gusty winds possible

August 21, 2012 | 10:42 pm

Red flag warning
A Red Flag fire warning has been issued for a large swath of Southern California due to the possibility of lightning and gusty winds in the wake of a heat wave that has dried vegetation, forecasters said Tuesday.

The warning, which signifies an increased threat of brush fires, goes into effect from midnight to 5 p.m. Wednesday for mountain, valley and desert areas in Los Angeles, Ventura and Santa Barbara counties, the National Weather Service said.

In a statement, the agency warned of storms that will have the "potential for dry lightning strikes and gusty erratic winds."

"Any dry lightning activity," the weather service said, "could result in fire starts due to the recent heat wave and very dry fuels."

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— Robert J. Lopez

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Graphic explains the effects of thunderstorms. Credit: National Weather Service
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