You don't need us to tell you how hot it's been in Southern California over the last few days. The latest heat wave has seen records fall and flex alerts issued as air conditioners around the Southland struggled to keep up with the intense heat. But, no matter how hot you thought it got in your house over the weekend, it was nothing compared to the temperature in Death Valley.
According to the NOAA's Weather Prediction Center, California's notoriously hot Death Valley hit temperatures of 130 degrees on Sunday, shattering the record for North America and if verified, will be the hottest temperature recorded in the U.S. since 1913.
"Death Valley, California recorded a high temperature of 130°F at 3:41 PM PDT on Sunday, August 16, 2020. This temperature was measured at Furnace Creek near the Visitors Center using a National Weather Service owned automated observation system. This observed high temperature is considered preliminary and not yet official," the National Weather Service wrote.
The record-breaking heat is thanks to a massive 'heat dome' that refuses to budge and has brought oppressive heat from Arizona to Montana. As many as 52 million people have been placed under some kind of heat alert on Monday, where many parts of the Western United States could see temperatures range between 110 and 130 degrees.
Before Sunday, the highest temperature ever reliably recorded on Earth was 129.2F in Death Valley in 2013. In 1913, a thermometer recorded a temperature of 134F also in Death Valley, but modern weather experts say that reading was unreliable.
The intense heat wave, which is the fourth this summer, is the longest so far and is expected to last several more days through Thursday. Some cooling will begin by then, but temperatures will not revert to normal until the middle of next week.
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