SAN DIEGO (CNS) – Three weeks into fall, the San Diego area remained mired Wednesday in what seemed to be an endless summer as a stubborn autumn heat wave kept the region roasting for a third straight day.
A strengthening high-pressure system centered off the West Coast drove afternoon temperatures into the high 80s and low 90s along the coast and in the mountains, and into the triple digits in the inland valleys and deserts, according to the National Weather Service.
In the East County community of Campo, the high of 100 degrees exceeded the prior Oct. 14 record of 95, the NWS reported. Lake Cuyamaca, for its part, tied its existing milestone mark of 96 degrees for Wednesday’s date.
Other notably lofty mercury readings included 95 degrees in Alpine, El Cajon, Escondido, Poway and Ramona; 98 in San Pasqual Valley, Santee and Valley Center; 102 in Rancho San Diego; 103 in Borrego Springs; and 105 in Ocotillo Wells.
Humidity levels could drop below 10% throughout the region Thursday night through Friday, modestly elevating the risk of wildfires in the mountains and the western valleys, forecaster advised.
An NWS heat advisory is slated to remain in effect in coastal areas and the western valleys until 5 p.m. Friday, when the swelter is expected to begin subsiding, making for a gradual return to more seasonable weather.
While the intense hot spell persists, locals are advised to drink plenty of fluids, stay in air-conditioned rooms if possible, avoid the sun during the hottest parts of the day and check up on potentially at-risk relatives and neighbors, according to the NWS. The agency also stresses that children, seniors and pets should never be left in a parked vehicle, even with windows open, as interior temperatures can rapidly turn lethally high.
To help residents escape the heat, the county is offering nine air- conditioned cooling centers in Alpine, Borrego Springs, Fallbrook, Lakeside, Potrero, Ramona, Santa Ysabel, Spring Valley and Valley Center.
Due to the coronavirus, mandatory mask-wearing and social-distancing protocols are enforced in the facilities. A full list of the locations can be found at www.sandiegocounty.gov/content/sdc/hhsa/programs/ais/cool_zones.html.