Sacramento region: From snow to heat wave in six days

Want to beat the heat wave? Weather Service provides plenty of tips

Brooke Bingaman of the the National Weather Service in Sacramento offers specific ways for valley residents to remain healthy and safe as a significant heat wave rolls through the region.
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Brooke Bingaman of the the National Weather Service in Sacramento offers specific ways for valley residents to remain healthy and safe as a significant heat wave rolls through the region.

If you wished for warmer weather this month, then maybe you wished too hard.

One week after a June cold snap brought snow to the Sierra Nevada, Northern California is expected to be engulfed by a weeklong scorcher, with projected high temperatures between 100 and 110 degrees.

“We are looking at multiple days of 100-degree-plus temperatures all through the Sacramento region starting Friday,” said Hannah Chandler, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

Forecasts predict a strong high pressure ridge will camp out over the western United States, creating conditions for hot weather from California to Arizona.

Last weekend, the region enjoyed cooler-than-normal temperatures. Sunday’s high of 68 degrees at Sacramento Executive Airport was 18 degrees cooler than the normal high of 86 degrees. The cold snap produced 5 inches of snow at Kingvale, in the Northern Sierra.

This week is expected to be 10 to 15 degrees above the normal highs in the low to mid-90s, said Chandler. The weather service has issued an “excessive heat watch” from Shasta to Stockton. Overnight lows are expected to be between 65 and 75 degrees.

“It’s a pretty sudden change,” Chandler said. “We definitely think its going to catch some people off guard. It’s going to be hot this weekend.”

Sacramento city and county governments say they’re taking steps to prepare, but weren’t ready to announce the opening of any designated cooling centers.

The Sacramento region will occasionally experience multiday streaks of 100 degree days. Last year, the temperature in downtown Sacramento cracked 100 degrees from June 25 to June 30, Chandler said.

Sacramento County’s two agencies dealing with seniors, Adult Protective Services and In Home Supportive Services department, have been asked to ensure clients have an adequate plan to stay cool, said Kim Nava, a spokeswoman for the county. Linda Tucker, a spokeswoman for the city of Sacramento, said the city will monitor the situation, but isn’t anticipating the need to extend the hours of community centers.

The most vulnerable to death or serious complications from the heat are the very young and very old.

Chris Harvey, a spokesman for the Sacramento Fire Department, emphasized the need for replacing electrolytes, found in sports drinks and children’s Pedialyte.

“People should be very aware of signs of heatstroke or heat exhaustion,” Harvey said. These signs and symptoms include fatigue, nausea, vomiting, headache, excessive thirst, dizziness and fainting. If someone is showing signs of heat stroke, he says, call 911 and take measures to cool them down such as using ice packs and removing any excessive clothing.

Sacramento Metro Fire Department spokesman Chris Vestal said to avoid the sun during peak heat. He recommended staying indoors, or protecting yourself from the sun when outdoors, by wearing sunscreen or staying in the shade.

He asked people to use caution when swimming in Sacramento rivers. The record winter snowfall means the rivers will be much colder and faster than recent years.

“We recommend still water or non-flowing water ... generally the pool is better,” said Vestal. “The water itself is still pretty cold because of the snowmelt.”

Ed Fletcher: 916-321-1269, @NewsFletch

Staying cool

▪ Drink extra non-alcoholic fluids, especially water

▪ Stay cool indoors in air-conditioned facilities or in the shade, especially during the hottest part of the day

▪ Avoid heavy exertion in the heat

▪ Wear lightweight, loose fitting clothing, a broad-brimmed hat and sunscreen

▪ Avoid hot foods and heavy meals

▪ If you become lightheaded, feel confused or experience any other symptoms of heat exhaustion, get to a cool area until you feel better

▪ Never leave a person or animal in a parked car; temperatures inside a vehicle can rise to dangerous levels in minutes

▪ Don’t forget pets that also need extra water and shade

▪ Check on vulnerable neighbors who may need assistance.

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