Summer is not over, with triple-digit heat waves expected this weekend

With only two weeks of summer left, oppressive heat will continue to roast the low-lying deserts of California and Arizona over the next few days. Phoenix, in particular, is expected to set some worrying records with temperatures above 110 degrees Fahrenheit this weekend.

“A period of very hot temperatures, even by local standards, will occur,” read a statement. urgent excessive heat warning released by the National Weather Service Thursday morning.

Temperatures In the sprawling metropolis of Phoenix, the mercury is forecast to soar to 114 degrees Saturday and Sunday. The city has already seen 52 days with maximum temperatures above 110 degrees in 2023; adding two more to that tally would exceed the previous record of 53 days over 110 degrees set in 2020.

Earlier this summer, the city experienced a 31 consecutive days days over 110, breaking the previous record of 18 days.

Maricopa County, which includes Phoenix, is also on course for a grimmer milestone: a record high for annual heat-related deaths. From Wednesday county counted 194 such deaths in 2023 so far, with 351 more deaths being investigated to determine a link to the heat. At this point in 2022, 153 heat-related deaths have been confirmed and 238 more are still under investigation. Last year’s final tally 425 heat-related deaths is the most recorded in a calendar year since the county began tracking it in 2006.

So far, more than half of heat-related deaths in 2023 are people who are homeless (44%) or whose living conditions are unknown (10%).

City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department closes popular hiking trails 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on days when the National Weather Service issues an excessive heat warning. Anyone looking to take a walk on the city’s iconic Camelback Mountain will need to get there early or late in the evening this weekend.

excessive heat warning card

National Weather Service

It’s not just one town’s problem

The danger extends beyond the concrete-laden Phoenix metropolitan complex, with Tucson, Yuma, Palm Springs and other cities in between also under scrutiny. excessive heat warning this weekend.

Many heat records in the western United States generally rival previous records set in the past decade alone. Climate change and the rise in surface temperatures has accelerated dramatically in the 21st century, triggering an increased risk of heat waves, droughts, wildfires and more severe storms.

Solar physicist Keith Strong noted on Twitter on Thursday that record temperatures around the world are tripling record highs.

“Over the past week, Earth has set 1,178 new daily temperature records, compared to just 351 new records,” Strong said. “If the climate was in climate equilibrium, these two numbers should be statistically equivalent, but they are not.”

How to Stay Cool and Survive

The National Weather Service urges anyone in an area facing excessive heat to stay hydrated, avoid sun exposure during the day, wear light, loose clothing and seek air conditioner.

To learn more about the types of clothing that can help you beat the heatcheck out our step-by-step guide to staying cool.

Forecasters warn that fans may not be enough to cope with temperatures above 110 degrees this weekend, but access to air conditioner is not guaranteed for everyone in the South West. Luckily, we’ve compiled 10 ways to get by without air conditioning When temperatures are soaring.

And if you have to rely on a fan, the proper placement will be essential to get the most out of it and stem the sweat.

Plus, alcohol-free, sugar-free, and caffeine-free liquids are more hydrating, as are smaller, more frequent meals.

Be sure to check in with your friends, family, neighbors and pets to see how they are doing.

Many communities will provide public cooling shelters, including Phoenix and Arizona Heat Relief Network. Check with your local county or municipal government for other resources.

Finally, if you are in a hot zone, take the time to know the difference between heatstroke and heat exhaustion. Heat stroke can be deadly, so take a look our guide to the signs, causes and what to do in such a scenario.


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