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Brutal Santa Ana winds fuel dangerous Ventura County wildfire, grounding choppers

Faced with the strongest Santa Ana winds of the season this week, firefighters had been bracing for a flashpoint.

And on Monday, they got it when a fire broke out near Santa Paula and quickly exploded to more than 5,000 acres in just a few hours.

Some of Southern California’s worst wildfires have occurred in the period between October and December, when Santa Ana winds whip up. This week’s winds are tempered because the temperatures are cooler than the hot conditions seen during October Santa Anas, which sparked numerous destructive firestorms.

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