Fire Weather, Hazardous Conditions Threaten Southland


LOS ANGELES (CNS) - A heat wave began washing over the Southland today, creating an elevated danger of wildfire and prompting National Weather forecasters to urge area residents to guard against “dangerously hot conditions.”

The Weather Service warned of hot, very dry conditions, with humidity levels in the single digits, and strong gusty winds. But no red flag warnings were immediately issued.

The conditions the NWS forecast were slightly more severe than those projected on Wednesday: It now says temperatures between today and Saturday are expected to range between 86 and 94 degrees along the coast, 85 to 103 in the mountains, 95 to 106 in the Antelope Valley, and 95 to 107 in L.A. County's other valleys and the foothills. If the forecast turns out to be accurate, it will mark one of the rare times when the Antelope Valley is not the county's hottest spots.

“Dangerously hot conditions are possible, especially away from the coast, Thursday through Saturday as strong high pressure builds over the region. The hottest day is expected to be Friday, when many valley locations will see temperatures above 100 degrees,'' the NWS said on its website. It said area residents should restrict outdoor activities to early-morning and evening hours, wear loose, lightweight clothing of light colors, and drink plenty of fluids other than coffee or alcohol.

The warning noted that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recommends scheduling frequent rest breaks in shaded or air conditioned environments for people who work outdoors to guard against heat stroke.

“Also, never, ever, leave children, the elderly and pets in an enclosed car, even with the windows down during this heat,'' as car interiors can rapidly become hot enough to kill, warned the NWS.

A heat advisory will be in effect from 11 a.m. Thursday to 9 p.m. Saturday in the San Gabriel, San Fernando and Santa Clarita valleys, both the San Gabriel and Santa Monica mountains, and inland Orange County. No special advisories were issued for the Antelope Valley because temperatures of 100+ there are not regarded as unusual.

Photo: Getty Images

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