Santa Ana winds, red flag fire warnings on Thanksgiving in Southern California. Heavy smoke clouds over downtown Los Angeles. And as temperatures rise, wind chill warnings are issued for Southern California.
A look at some of the latest conditions in the National Weather Service area of responsibility.
SWEETWATER, California (CNN) — As the first day of Thanksgiving approaches, a state of emergency is in effect in four counties in Southern California.
A blaze that could impact up to 250,000 people is racing toward the town of Sweetwater. Officials say a fire burning in the brush and timber on both sides of Interstate 5 is approaching a highway bridge. The fire is about 1 1/2 miles from the Sweetwater exit; about 300 firefighters are battling the blaze.
The cause is still under investigation by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection. Officials are warning the fire is coming in fast and strong.
Los Angeles County firefighters report that water is being pulled up from the Los Angeles River with “huge force.” About 35,000 gallons have been brought in. The county fire department is reporting the fire is advancing at between 12 and 15 feet every hour. At this rate, officials say it appears the fire will reach the Sweetwater exit in about two hours.
As a precaution against possible flooding, some 1,000 fire officials have flown to Sweetwater from as far away as San Bernardino County.
The National Weather Service issues a wind chill warning for Los Angeles, Ventura, Riverside, Orange and San Bernardino counties on Thanksgiving Day.
As the wind gets stronger, it gets colder. Winds are blowing from the east at 7 to 20 miles an hour; they may gust as high as 20 to 30 miles an hour, according to the National Weather Service.
Temperatures are expected to drop below freezing today in many parts of the area. In addition, the drought conditions are expected to continue in Southern California for many more days.
But as the rain begins to fall today and Friday, a few spots of snow could be