Photo by John Schreiber.
Photo by John Schreiber.

If you’re sweating outside … get used to it.

A heat wave expected to last through Friday began rolling over the Southland Wednesday, threatening serious health conditions, especially for vulnerable residents, and what forecasters called an “elevated” risk of wildfire.

The valleys, especially the San Fernando and Santa Clarita valleys, were Los Angeles County’s hottest spots, with Woodland Hills, Chatsworth, Pasadena and Lancaster hovering around the 100-degree mark most of the afternoon.

Downtown Los Angeles reached 90 Wednesday. The temperature downtown is expected to hit 94 tomorrow and 95 Friday.

“The hot conditions may result in an increase in heat-related illnesses, especially for the homeless, elderly, infants, outdoor workers and those participating in outdoor activities,” warned an NWS statement, blaming the heat wave on “a strong ridge of high pressure.”

“The extended period of hot and dry conditions will also bring elevated fire danger,” it said.

Forecasters said Thursday and Friday will be the hottest days of the week, with the warm air mass leading to “triple-digit highs in the valleys and 90s just a few miles inland from the beach.”

Forecasters urged people to protect themselves and their loved ones from the high heat. They said residents should stay well-hydrated, avoid working in the sun, check on neighbors and relatives — especially the elderly — provide plenty of water to pets and livestock, and motorists must never leave children, the elderly or pets in closed cars parked in hot weather.

Los Angeles County health officials declared a heat alert through at least Friday for the San Fernando, Santa Clarita and eastern San Gabriel valleys. County officials noted that cooling centers will be available throughout the county. A list is available online at

“There will be some cooling Saturday as a weak cold front hits extreme Northern California, increasing onshore flow locally,” according to the NWS. “Biggest temperature falls will be along the central coast, which likely will see the marine layer returning. Elsewhere, temperatures will still be four to eight degrees above normal.”

—City News Service

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