SAN FRANCISCO—The National Weather Service issued a Red Flag Warning into effect for Wednesday, July 14. High winds and low humidity may lead to rapid or dramatic increases in wildfire activity in Northern California.

A Red Flag Warning is implemented when weather events could result in extreme fire behavior that may occur in the following 24 hours, according to CAL FIRE. A small spark can ignite a major wildfire in dry, windy conditions.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration tracked large amounts of smoke from numerous wildfires burning across the Western U.S. and Canada. Air quality alerts were put into effect on July 14 for locations from California to Minnesota, according to the NOAA.

When fire danger is high, CAL Fire will place additional firefighters on duty, staff more fire engines, and keep equipment running to respond to fires faster. Residents of Northern California are urged to take extra safety precautions to prevent wildfires from starting.

CAL FIRE’s “One Less Spark Campaign” offers ways for the public to reduce the percentage of wildfires started by human activity. Ninety-five percent of all wildfires started in California are caused by people, according to the campaign website.

Wildfires can be prevented by properly using outdoor equipment, completely extinguishing campfires, maintaining vehicle and tow safety, and practicing fire-safe target shooting. More information can be found regarding wildfire safety precautions on CAL FIRE’s website at