Officials from Napa and Sonoma counties say they're expecting aggressive wind patterns that will present more challenges for the fires that have killed at least 17 people and ravaged large swaths of wine country. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) Firefighters battling wildfires in California's wine country faced the prospect of new outbreaks on Wednesday when dry, windy conditions return to an area where blazes have killed at least 17 people and destroyed 2,000 homes and businesses. Gusts of up to 50 miles per hour (80 kph) and 10 percent humidity are forecast for later on Wednesday and into Thursday for the region, where 17 fires have forced 20,000 people to flee their homes in one of the deadliest wildfire outbreaks in California history, fire officials said. "Today we're expected to go back into a wind pattern from the north with low humidity and significant winds out of the north, which is definitely going to cause us challenges," said Napa County Fire Chief Barry Biermann. "We are expecting some extreme fire behavior and growth of our incidents and that is going to lead us to challenges." The weather had given firefighters a reprieve on Tuesday as cooler temperatures, lower winds and coastal fog let them make headway against the fires that had burned 115,000 acres. New evacuation orders were posted overnight across Sonoma County, north of San Francisco.