Firefighters battled an expanding Northern California wildfire in sweltering conditions as yet another heatwave enveloped the West, triggering an extreme heat advisory for desert and inland regions.
Mojave Desert’s Death Valley of southern California hit 128 F (53 degrees Celsius) on Saturday, as per a National Weather Service measurement near Furnace Creek. Although the temperature was alarmingly high, it was considerably lesser than the former day, when the site hit 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54 C).
If verified, the 130-degree measurement would be the warmest high reported since July 1913, often regarded as the highest temperature ever measured on Earth.
Around 300 miles (483 kilometers) northwest of the scorching desert, California’s mightiest wildfire of the year was burning near the state’s Nevada border. After tripling in magnitude between Friday and Saturday, the Beckwourth Complex Fire showed a little indication of stopping its spread northeast from the forest region of Sierra Nevada.
Late Saturday, flames leaped Interstate 395, posing a danger to homes in Washoe County, Nevada. The Truckee Meadows Fire Protection District tweeted, to take urgent measures to protect livestock and big animals.
The wildfire, which was barely 8% controlled, grew rapidly to 86 square miles as firefighters endured temperatures in excess of 100 degrees.
It was one of many potentially dangerous houses throughout Western states, which were anticipated to see triple-digit temperatures over the weekend.
As it raced through dense forest, a wildfire quadrupled in size in southern Oregon to 120 square miles Saturday, pushed by high winds.
The NWS warned that the hazardous circumstances may result in heat-related diseases, while California’s power grid administrator released a statewide Flex Alert from 4 to 9 p.m. Saturday to prevent power outages and rolling blackouts.
The California ISO warned of a possible power deficit, not only due to the rising temperatures but also because a wildfire in southern Oregon threatened lines of transmission that bring imported energy to California.
On Friday, Governor Gavin Newsom released an emergency proclamation suspending regulations to allow for more electricity capacity, and the ISO sought help from neighboring states. On Saturday, Newsom signed another proclamation authorizing the use of auxiliary ship engines in an emergency to alleviate strain on the power system.
Palm Springs, California, set a new record high temperature of 120 degrees Fahrenheit (49 degrees Celsius) on Saturday. The Desert Sun stated that it was the fourth time this year that temperatures surpassed 120 degrees.
In California’s agricultural Central Valley, temperatures reached 100 degrees Fahrenheit (100 degrees Celsius), with Fresno hitting 111 degrees Fahrenheit (44 degrees Celsius), just one degree shy of the date’s all-time record