California Experiences Record Heat, Sparking More Wildfires

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California experienced one of its hottest weekends on record in any month, while the intense heat fueled an already precarious fire situation in the state by sparking additional wildfires and making battling existing fires worse.

California topples heat records

The western US was scorching over the Labor Day weekend and one place that took the brunt of the heat was California, where nearly the entirety of the Golden State was under heat alerts by the National Weather Service (NWS).

California not only experienced one of its hottest weekends in memory, some locations recorded their highest temperatures ever observed in any month, the Washington Post reported.

In Woodland Hills, in the San Fernando Valley, just north of Hollywood/Los Angeles, the area saw its highest temperature ever on record at 121°F.

The National Weather Service (NWS) Los Angeles tweeted: “The 121° high temperature at Woodland Hills official site (Pierce College) was also the highest official temperature ever recorded in L.A. County as well as Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo Counties.”

The NWS said the temperature was recorded around noon in Woodland Hills at Pierce College, which operates one of the country’s oldest cooperative weather stations, The Hill reported.

In the city of Chino, about 32 miles east of Los Angeles, also reached 121 degrees.

Farther north, a city may have recorded the highest temperature ever measured so close to the Pacific Ocean and the Americans. It occurred in San Luis Obispo, which is only 10 miles from the coast, where the temperature reached 120 degrees.

In San Francisco, the city also broke a record held for over a century, reaching 100 degrees in downtown, the Post reported.

Heat sparks fires, worsens existing blazes

California has experienced a hellacious summer outbreak of wildfires at historic proportions. The state hasn’t even reached the typical peak month of October, when the Santa Ana winds kick up and significantly ramp-up the danger.

On Saturday, a fire erupted in the Sierra National Forest, about 290 miles north of Los Angeles, dubbed the Creek Fire, burning at least 45,500 acres by Sunday afternoon.

Near the Mammoth pool reservoir, flames crossed the San Joaquin River trapped roughly 1000 people and another 150 people at a boat launch, the Associated Press reported. Military helicopters rescued some 200 people, the AP reported.

According to Doppler radar data, some forecasters say the Creek fire may have produced multiple, rare fire tornadoes. In addition to the Creek fire, firefighters in California the second-, third- and fourth-largest fires in state history, the Post reported.

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Mary Newman
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