We’re just warm­ing up

Triple-digit tem­per­a­tures in store for next week

Los Angeles Times - - CALIFORNIA - By Veron­ica Rocha and Son­aiya Kel­ley

Get ready, South­ern Cal­i­for­nia. Things are get­ting hot.

The Na­tional Weather Ser­vice is­sued ex­ces­sive heat warn­ings for the South­land on Thurs­day, say­ing a pro­longed heat wave will gather steam over the week­end and last through the end of next week.

While the mer­cury al­ready has be­gun its climb, fore­cast­ers say the hottest tem­per­a­tures will ar­rive next week.

In­land ar­eas will see triple-digit tem­per­a­tures

start­ing Mon­day and last­ing through Wednesday. In some cases, records are likely to be bro­ken.

“The longevity of this heat wave is go­ing to be the most dan­ger­ous as­pect,” said James Brother­ton, a me­te­o­rol­o­gist for the weather ser­vice in San Diego. “For the hu­man body, it’s re­peated ex­po­sure to the heat.”

A dry, high-

pres­sure sys­tem cen­tered over Ari­zona and the South­west is to blame for the hot days ahead, fore­cast­ers say. Tem­per­a­tures will soar 15 de­grees above av­er­age in in­land com­mu­ni­ties.

Desert and moun­tain com­mu­ni­ties will bear the brunt of the heat.

Tem­per­a­tures will hover be­tween 120 and 122 de­grees early next week in the Coachella Val­ley and deserts in San Diego County. The hottest day will be Tues­day, when tem­per­a­tures could reach 127 de­grees in Death Val­ley, Brother­ton said.

If you plan to seek re­lief in Palm Springs, think again. Tem­per­a­tures will reach a record-break­ing 123 de­grees and prob­a­bly re­main in the 120s next week, he said.

“The coast is go­ing to be the only place to go to get re­lief,” Brother­ton said.

Sun­screen is highly rec­om­mended be­fore hit­ting the beach, and fore­cast­ers say tem­per­a­tures there will re­main in the 70s, 80s and 90s.

Triple-digit tem­per­a­tures will keep things siz­zling across the Sacra­mento and Cen­tral val­leys.

Swel­ter­ing heat will also in­crease snowmelt in the Sierra Ne­vada in Mono and Inyo coun­ties, fore­cast­ers said. The melt­ing snow has led to un­pre­dictable river con­di­tions. At least 17 peo­ple have died this year in Cal­i­for­nia rivers.

“Lengthy days and very warm tem­per­a­tures will cre­ate con­di­tions nec­es­sary for very high snowmelt rates,” said Tim Bard­s­ley, a hy­drol­o­gist for the weather ser­vice in Reno.

Rivers along higher-el­e­va­tion ar­eas will ex­pe­ri­ence high flows and could pose a risk to moun­tain and park vis­i­tors.

In Los Angeles County, most cities will get 90-de­gree weather, said Jayme Laber, a hy­drol­o­gist at the weather ser­vice’s of­fice in Ox­nard.

The desert com­mu­ni­ties in the An­te­lope Val­ley could see tem­per­a­tures reach the low 100s to 110 de­grees, he said.

As for the heat blan­ket grip­ping South­ern Cal­i­for­nia, Laber said, “it’s not go­ing to budge for a while.”

The ab­sence of wind is the only sav­ing grace from the heat, he said.

Although the fire dan­ger will be high, Laber said, the lack of wind could al­low fire­fight­ers to quickly tackle a blaze.

An­other dan­ger for fire­fight­ers is over­grown brush and veg­e­ta­tion along Los Angeles County high­ways, hill­sides and foothills.

With the re­cent heat, the brush has be­come bone-dry.

The parched veg­e­ta­tion has al­ready fu­eled nu­mer­ous small fires in re­cent weeks, said In­spec­tor Joey Mar­ron, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County Fire Depart­ment.

In prepa­ra­tion for the heat wave, the Fire Depart­ment staffed wa­ter ten­ders (tankers that carry wa­ter) in the An­te­lope Val­ley, Mar­ron said.

Although the depart­ment is pre­pared for any large blaze, he said, fire­fight­ers also rely on peo­ple to be their eyes and ears.

“If they see smoke, just call us right away,” he said.

As with most heat waves in Los Angeles County, the most com­mon med­i­cal emer­gency call is heat ex­po­sure, he said.

Fire­fight­ers and paramedics of­ten find se­niors and chil­dren se­verely de­hy­drated from ex­po­sure to heat.

Mar­ron said most heat ex­po­sure pa­tients sim­ply don’t know their lim­its.

In down­town Los Angeles on Fri­day, Amad Jack­son and Ceci Bastida took cover from the sun un­der a shady tree at Grand Park.

“This heat is too much,” Jack­son said. “Be­ing an L.A. na­tive, I like warm weather but I mean 90, 100 de­grees? That’s too much. Es­pe­cially for the kids.”

Bastida wasn’t look­ing for­ward to the heat ei­ther.

“I have not pre­pared, not at all,” she said. “I like a lit­tle bit of warmth, but I don’t like crazy heat waves.”

Dolores McAl­lis­ter, 76, vis­ited the Santa Mon­ica Pier for the first time in 30 years on Fri­day.

“We took a bus trip,” she said. “I haven’t done this since I was a teenager. I just haven’t had time. This has been amaz­ing sit­ting out here.”

McAl­lis­ter, a Pasadena res­i­dent who grew up in New York, sat on a bench over­look­ing the beach as she waited for her friends to re­join her.

“I love Cal­i­for­nia weather,” she said. “Even though we have hot weather, it’s noth­ing like back east. The last year I was there, I kept un­plug­ging the fan to make sure the blades were mov­ing. I couldn’t feel noth­ing. I was like, ‘I’m outta here!’ ”

At the pier, Devon Kis­gen and her 4-year-old daugh­ter, Ryan, were bask­ing in the sun’s rays.

The toasty weather was so wel­com­ing, Kis­gen said she is con­sid­er­ing mak­ing a sec­ond trip to the pier on Satur­day.

“We’re lov­ing that it’s fi­nally sunny be­cause we’ve had such ter­ri­ble May gray and June gloom this year,” she said. “So were just thrilled that it’s fi­nally get­ting warmer.”

Christian K. Lee Los Angeles Times

LUIGI, a pit bull, cools down at Ge­ne­see Av­enue Park in L.A. on Fri­day. Tem­per­a­tures will soar 15 de­grees above av­er­age in some ar­eas next week.

Wally Skalij Los Angeles Times

A MAN re­laxes in the stands at Long Beach Poly High School on Fri­day. In Los Angeles County, most cities will see 90-de­gree tem­per­a­tures next week, ac­cord­ing to Jayme Laber, a hy­drol­o­gist based in Ox­nard.

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