Heat wave may topple records in Siskiyou this weekend. How hot will it get?
A dangerous heat wave that has the potential to topple records will bake Siskiyou County this weekend and early next week.
An excessive heat warning has been issued by the National Weather Service, calling for temperatures that could reach 102 in Mount Shasta on Sunday and 108 in the Yreka area. The warning extends from 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 26 through 11 p.m. on Tuesday, June 29.
And while it will be hot during the day, the evenings will remain warm – between 60 and 75 degrees, the NWS forecasts.
"If we had something more than a heat warning, we would use it," said Lead Forecaster Shad Keene at the U.S. National Weather Service office in Medford, Ore. "Records will be broken."
Heat records will be challenged in north and south Siskiyou County
Mount Shasta's all-time record in June is 99 degrees, Keene said, set in 2015. This record was already tied this month on June 20 – Father's Day – and he believes the record will be "shattered" on Sunday.
The Yreka area's all-time June high is 104 degrees – a record that was also tied on Father's Day – but Sunday's forecasted 109 degrees will most likely topple that record, too, Keene said.
The blazing temperatures forecast for Sunday "are getting darn close" to reaching the all-time highs for any month, Keene said. Yreka's all-time heat record is 109 degrees, set on July 11, 2002, and Mount Shasta reached 105 degrees on Aug. 7, 1981.
No thunderstorms will accompany the heatwave, forecasters say
One silver lining – the heat is dry enough and the air is stable enough that no thunderstorms are predicted during the excessive heat warning, said Keene, although a red flag warning is in effect Thursday evening, June 24.
After Friday, however, thunderstorms – and any accompanying lightning – are no longer in the forecast, reducing the chance of wildfire starts.
"So if humans can do their part, and practice wildfire safety, there may be no large fires during this heat event," Keene said.
Here's where you can find cooling centers in Siskiyou County
Community Resource Centers and county libraries will be open to serve as cooling centers for those in need of relief during excessive and extreme heat. The centers are operating during normal business hours only, according to the Department of Public Health.
• Hub Community Resource Center 310 S. 13th St., Montague, CA (530) 459-3481
• Mt. Shasta Community Resource Center 109 E. Lake St., Mt. Shasta, CA (530) 926-1400
• Dunsmuir Community Resource Center 5844 Dunsmuir Ave, Dunsmuir, CA (530) 235-4400
• Weed Family & Community Resource Center 260 Main St., Weed, CA (530) 938-9914
• Scott Valley Family Resource Center 11920 Main St., Fort Jones, CA (530) 468-2450
• Dunsmuir Branch Library 5714 Dunsmuir Ave, Dunsmuir, CA (530) 235-2035
• Etna Branch Library 115 Collier Way, Etna, CA. (530) 467-3661
• Montague Library 230 S. 13th St., Montague, CA (530) 459-5473
• Tulelake Library 451 Main St., Tulelake, CA (530) 667-2297
• Butte Valley Library 800 W. Third St., Dorris, CA (530) 397-4932
• Yreka Library 719 4th St., Yreka, CA (530) 841-4175
How to keep safe in excessive heat, and when you should get help
During periods of excessive or extreme heat, the Siskiyou County Department of Health offers the following tips:
• Find air conditioning.
• Avoid strenuous activities.
• Wear light clothing.
• Check on family members and neighbors.
• Drink plenty of fluids.
• Watch for heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
• Never leave people or pets in a closed car.
Signs of heat exhaustion include feeling faint or dizzy, excessive sweating, cool, pale, clammy skin, nausea or vomiting, rapid, weak pulse, and muscle cramps. Signs of heat stroke include throbbing headache, confusion, no sweating, body temperature about 103°, red, hot, dry skin, nausea or vomiting, rapid, strong pulse, possible loss of consciousness.
Everyone is at risk of heat-related illness but older adults, children, and sick or overweight individuals are at greater risk from extreme heat.
Monitor for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke and take appropriate action when needed, such as getting to a cooler location, drinking sports drinks or taking a cool bath. Call your healthcare provider if symptoms get worse or last more than an hour. For heat stroke call 9-1-1 or get to a hospital immediately.
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Skye Kinkade is the editor of the Mt. Shasta Area Newspapers and the Siskiyou Daily News. She is a fourth generation, lifelong Siskiyou County resident.