Temperatures in some areas of the county are forecast to reach 99 degrees on Friday, continuing an unseasonably warm trend in Los Angeles.
Mrs. Hoxsie, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard, said, “It’s enough above normal, I’d even call it a [heatwave].”
In Woodland Hills, the outlook calls for a high of 99 degrees, one degree below the 1996 peak for the day. Burbank and Van Nuys can cross 92 degrees, while inland regions would be more in the 90s, according to Hoxsie.
A ridge over the city is allowing a hot air mass from the south to pass north, which is causing the high temperatures, she said. Woodland Hills reached 100 degrees on Thursday. The previous high-water mark for the day was 101, which was reached in 1959.
The National Weather Service reported that temperatures in Sandberg reached 86 degrees on Thursday, breaking at least one high. In 2015, the previous high was 85 degrees.
Forecasters said the high temperatures could lead to fire weather conditions through Saturday, with northeast gusts approaching 35 mph Friday morning and humidity levels lingering about 15%.
Small brush fires have already erupted in the region, including a 28-acre wildfire in Thousand Oaks that forced evacuations on Thursday and a 650-acre blaze in Castaic on Wednesday.
People can remain hydrated and use vigilance while spending time outside or around a source of flame, according to the National Weather Service.
Temperatures throughout the L.A. area are expected to rebound to the upper 70s and low 80s on Saturday, according to Hoxsie.
“It breaks pretty quick, and then by Sunday, we’re looking at the 70s across the inland areas. So today is it.”
The heatwave comes as analysts voice alarm about the state’s continuing drought, with some predicting another extreme fire season due to insufficient precipitation, parched vegetation, and above-normal temperatures.
The magnitude of high temperatures on certain days is also predicted to rise, implying that local temperature records may fall more often in the coming decades.
That isn’t to say that there won’t be periods of warm weather in Los Angeles, such as those seen this summer. On average, July this year is predicted to be 4 degrees colder than July 2020. However, the strength of scorching heatwaves is expected to increase in the future, which could have significant implications.
Long stretches of extreme heat put the human body under strain while it tries to keep a constant temperature. This may be deadly, particularly for the elderly, infants, and those with chronic illnesses. Heatwaves destroy more Americans per year than any other natural disaster, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Parts of Southern California are now scorched on a regular basis by the kind of extreme heat waves that just hit the Downtown region a few times a year. According to the UCLA study’s scientists, the San Gabriel Valley currently has around 32 excessive heat days per year, much higher than the six or so that typically affect Downtown Los Angeles.
The San Gabriel Valley is forecast to warm to temperatures above 95 degrees on 62 days a year by 2050, putting people into a complete two months of deadly heat, the San Fernando Valley was not included in the UCLA study.
Residents of Santa Monica, on the other hand, are likely to witness just one day of intense heat each year. By 2050, 16 intense heat days are forecast in Downtown LA.
Still, according to George Ban-Weiss, an assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering at USC, the occasional heat waves that send temperatures into the triple digits on the Westside can be more dangerous than season-long heat spells in other areas of LA.
Although temperatures are expected to rise this weekend, there are no indicators of rain in the forecast.
“We would be shouting that from the mountaintops if there was a chance of rain,” Hoxsie said.
In the weather, health experts advise reapplying sunscreen and remaining hydrated by consuming lots of water.