The intensely hot temperatures baking parts of the Los Angeles area this week are coming to a close, but not before managing to break a few more records by the end of the day today. Areas around downtown L.A. could exceed 100°F this afternoon.
Los Angeles set a record high of 99°F yesterday, breaking the previous record of 96°F set all the way back in 1890.
The high temperatures, as predicted by the National Weather Service yesterday evening, are expected to break more records today, some of which date back to the 1950s. Downtown L.A. will come very close to tying or breaking its 101°F record for May 15 set back in 1970. Burbank could tie or break its record of 102°F, which was also set on this date 44 years ago.
The L.A. area isn't the only metro experiencing the record heat. San Diego proper is expected to hit 101°F today while the airport (on the water) is expected to reach 97°F — both readings would shatter the official record of 91°F set back in 1956.
The extreme temperatures mixed with gusty winds and dry air are a breeding ground for wildfires across parts of California. Yesterday's fires were especially devastating near San Diego, destroying dozens of homes in Carlsbad and prompting authorities to evacuate the San Onofre Nuclear Power Plant as a precaution.
The threat for fires will continue through today as conditions are ripe for vegetation to burn and gusty winds will allow flames to quickly spread out of control.
Temperatures will begin to moderate tomorrow as the ridge of high pressure starts to break and allows cooler air to prevail.
[Images via AP and MapBox with edits by the author]