SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Will this week’s rain showers help thwart potential major wildfires in the Bay Area?
The wet weather resumes on Tuesday night and it will be pouring on and off this week, according to the forecast.
The moisture is much needed after a particularly bad drought this year – most of California has been in either extreme or exceptional drought conditions, according to the National Integrated Drought Information System. This level of severe dryness hasn’t been seen since 2017.
California also saw a record warm summer this year with below average precipitation, according to a quarterly report by climate experts.
Dryness combined with heat and high winds are the conditions that spark and spread wildfires, but we’re expected to get a series of storms as well as cooler-than-usual temperatures this week.
The National Weather Service said the Bay Area is on track for “a favorable wet pattern that will hopefully bring some relief to extremely dry fuels in the region.”
The aforementioned quarterly report published last month predicted that the Bay Area has equal chances this winter for either above average or below average precipitation.
The Drought Monitor extended outlook last week said it’s more likely now that the West Coast will see above-normal precipitation this week.
While it’s too early to tell how the winter season will end, at this time the NWS said models show “a visible moisture plume streaming towards the California coast.” These moisture plumes will build into storms and dampen fire risk in the Bay Area for now.