Friday, October 16, 2020 - 09:15

More than 50,000 California utility customers were without power and others around the state were urged to conserve electricity Thursday amid a fall heat wave that brought another round of extreme wildfire danger.

The National Weather Service issued heat advisories through Friday for temperatures in the 90s and even triple digits in many parts of the state.

Red-flag warnings for extreme fire danger were in place for much of the San Francisco Bay Area where winds bringing hot, dry gusts of up to 55 mph (88.5 kph) were expected to pose a threat of sparking new blazes in a region that already has seen some of the worst wildfires in state history.

A brush fire erupted early Thursday near the inland Southern California city of Redlands, triggering a small evacuation as it grew to about 100 acres, but was about 30% contained before dawn.

The Pacific Gas & Electric utility began shutting off power Wednesday evening to customers in portions of 24 counties, mainly in the Sierra Nevada and the San Francisco Bay Area. The affected customers ranged from 10 in Yolo County to more than 11,300 in Butte County.

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