Worst heat wave of the year hits Southern California

September brings scorching heat to Southern California, and forecasters predict record high temperatures.

From Wednesday through Labor Day weekend, the National Weather Service predicts temperatures could reach up to 115 degrees in parts of Southern California. It will be that of the region longest and hottest heat wave of the year, said David Sweet, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Oxnard. Conditions are expected to last through Monday, although “we don’t see an end to it yet,” Sweet said.

Here’s what you need to know.

Calendar and conditions

Excessive heat standby is in effect from 11 a.m. Wednesday to 8 p.m. Monday in much of Southern California, including Los Angeles County, Ventura County and southern coastal Santa Barbara County.

For Riverside, Orange and San Bernardino counties, the warning takes effect at 10 a.m. Tuesday and lasts until 8 p.m. Monday.

Sweet said valleys, mountains, foothills and deserts will take the brunt of the heat in LA and Ventura counties. From Wednesday to Monday, any of these days, temperatures could reach 115 degrees.

The warmest conditions are expected on Thursday before cooling slightly into the weekend, although conditions will still be warm and will increase again on Sunday.

In LA County, temperatures could reach 105 in Woodland Hills on Thursday and reach 110 on Sunday. Lancaster in the Antelope Valley could hit 108 on Thursday and Sunday. In Santa Clarita, Newhall could hit 106 on Thursday and 108 on Sunday.

Downtown Los Angeles could see a high of 93 on Thursday, 94 on Saturday and up to 100 on Sunday.

In Ventura County, Ojai is expected to hit 105 Thursday and 107 Sunday, while Fillmore is expected to hit 102 Thursday and 106 Sunday.

High temperatures at Los Angeles County beaches are expected to hover between the mid-80s and 90s for the next few days.

Temperatures in San Bernardino, Orange and Riverside counties will rise through Friday, rising again Sunday and Monday, said Casey Oswant, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in San Diego.

Temperatures between 100 and 106 degrees are expected in Riverside through Friday. On weekends, it could reach 108.

In the Coachella Valley, highs will remain between 110 and 115 degrees. In the high desert, in areas like Apple Valley and Lucerne Valley near Victorville, temperatures are likely to be between 105 and 110 degrees.

Conditions on the coast will be most severe on Sunday and Monday, with highs between 85 and 90 degrees.

People won’t get much relief overnight, with temperatures only expected to drop slightly, Oswant said.

Fire hazard

In addition to warm temperatures, the forecast includes very low humidity. Together, that creates a high fire danger, said California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection Battalion Chief Jon Heggie. Fuel moisture, or the amount of water in potential fuel such as vegetation, is “beginning to hit bottom” across the state, Heggie said.

He added that in parts of Southern California, fuel moisture is below historical averages.

“What that tells us is that the fuel, the brush, is ready to burn, all it needs is ignition,” Heggie said. “What we need to do is eliminate the ignition as best we can.” Heggie advised the public to be very mindful of outdoor activities.

Tuesday afternoon there was no red flag warning for gusty winds.

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