Temperature records were shattered Wednesday in two Riverside County cities for the second consecutive day amid a sweltering heat wave.
The mercury hit 107 in San Jacinto, breaking the previous record of 103 for June 16 that was set in 1985, according to the National Weather Service. San Jacinto also reached 107 on Tuesday, besting that day’s record that was set in 1961. Records have been kept consistently there since 1948, according to forecasters.
The high in Idyllwild was 104 on Wednesday, breaking its record for June 16, which was 97 in 1961. The mountain community reached 99 on Tuesday, also breaking that day’s record from 1961. The weather service has kept records in Idyllwild consistently since 1943.
A ridge of high pressure strengthened and expanded over the Southwestern United States this week, ushering in the sweltering conditions that are expected keep Riverside County in the triple digits during the daytime hours for the entire week. The system will begin weakening on Sunday, when temperatures are expected to begin subsiding.
The heat let up slightly Wednesday in portions of Riverside County, especially in the Coachella Valley, but forecasters said Thursday will be much hotter.
Wednesday’s highs countywide also included 90 in Corona, 96 in Riverside, 109 in Palm Springs and 101 in Lake Elsinore.
An excessive heat warning began Monday morning and will continue through 9 p.m. Sunday in the Coachella Valley and the San Gorgonio Pass near Banning.
The warning also includes the Riverside metropolitan area and the Riverside County mountains that began Tuesday and will last through 9 p.m. Saturday.
The weather service said the extreme heat will significantly increase the potential for heat-related illnesses, particularly for those working or participating in outdoor activities.
People should be prepared to drink plenty of fluids, stay in an air-conditioned room, stay out of the sun and check up on relatives and neighbors.
While young children and pets should never be left unattended in vehicles under any circumstances, the weather service said that’s especially true during warm or hot weather — when car interiors can reach lethal temperatures in a matter of minutes.
The county recently opened cooling centers in multiple locations, where residents who don’t have access to air-conditioning can stay during the heat of the day. A complete list of options is available at www.capriverside.org/cool-centers.