SAN DIEGO (KGTV/CNS) - Record-breaking heat is expected to descend upon the San Diego region Monday, with temperatures ramping up over the next three days and remaining high but tapering off just a bit through the end of the week.
The National Weather Service issued an excessive heat warning for San Diego County's inland valleys, western foothills and deserts that will be in effect until 10 p.m. Wednesday. A heat advisory is in effect in the mountains and along the coast, where temperatures will be cooler than the rest of the county but up to three degrees above the records for late August.
While the mercury will skyrocket on Monday, temperatures are expected to be even higher Tuesday and Wednesday. The heat could peak Tuesday for areas west of the mountains and on Wednesday farther inland.
10News Meteorologist Megan Parry said after the heat lowers on Wednesday, temperatures will remain well above average into the weekend. She added the heat wave could potentially last into next week.
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Megan's forecast for Monday calls for highs of 99 degrees in El Cajon; 86 in Chula Vista; 98 in Poway; and 100 in Ramona.
In general, Monday's high temperatures around the county will be 76 to 81 degrees at the beaches, 86 to 91 inland, 92 to 97 in the western valleys, 99 to 104 near the foothills, 94 to 100 in the mountains and 111 in the deserts.
On Tuesday, San Diego is forecasted to hit 91 degrees, which would break the previous Aug. 29 record of 88. Chula Vista is forecast to reach 95 degrees, one degree above the record for the date and 20 degrees above average, while Ramona is forecast to hit 108 degrees, besting the previous Aug. 29 high of 105. Chula Vista is also forecast to hit 92 on Wednesday, which would be four degrees higher than the previous record for the date.
"Persons working outdoors or those without access to adequate air conditioning will be more likely to experience heat related illness, such as heat exhaustion," the NWS said of those in areas under the extreme heat warning. "Some heat related illnesses are serious enough to require hospitalization and could become fatal if left untreated."
The weather service reminded residents to never leave kids or pets unattended in cars; drink more water than usual and avoid alcohol, sugar and caffeine; wear light colored clothing and a wide-brimmed hat outdoors to keep your head and body cooler; and take frequent rest breaks in shaded or air conditioned environments.
The region's high temperatures have prompted the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department to increase the number of on-duty fire crews and equipment.
SDFRD officials said: "Several years of drought coupled with heavy rains this past winter created significant fuel in the form of underbrush and grass. This fuel, combined with hot temperatures and low humidity, create conditions which are conducive to easily ignited and fast burning wildfires.
Fire weather conditions and forecasts are significant considerations in the suppression of wildland fires and firefighter safety. As such, all SDFD firefighters receive San Diego Gas & Electric's (SDG&E) 7-day Fire Potential Index (FPI) Outlook every day to provide them with wildfire risk indicators. The Fire Chief and his command staff use the FPI as a tool to prepare (staffing and increased resources) for elevated fire weather conditions in the city well in advance of the adverse weather. The FPI uses a combination of satellite data and weather information to identify areas most susceptible to fire ignition. SDG&E's meteorology team also provides information from Predictive Services' Santa Ana Wildfire Threat Index which helps in making operational decisions.
Five brush engines, with a crew of four personnel each and two water tenders will be staffed beginning Sunday and until the elevated fire weather conditions return to a normal level. Brush engines are large off-road capable fire apparatus which carry between 600 and 1500 gallons of water. SDFD water tenders carry 3000 gallons of water and provide water supply to engines at vegetation fires. In addition, the Metro Zone Emergency Command & Data Center (ECDC) and Air Operations Section staffing will also be increased."