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Update: Heat Warning, Air Quality Alert & Fire Weather Watch

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The Excessive Heat Warning remains in effect for the Central Sierra Foothills, the Central Valley and the Sierra Nevada through 6 PM Tuesday.

According to the National Weather Service, strong high pressure will result in daily and monthly record breaking heat today and (Labor Day) Monday across the Mother Lode, the Northern San Joaquin Valley and the Sierra Nevada below 5,500 feet. The heat risks will range from moderate to very high levels during this time, which could impact the general population, especially those spending an extended time outdoors. The hottest temperatures are expected today. There will be slight cooling on Tuesday, but triple digit heat will continue throughout the entire Central Valley.

Expect dangerously hot conditions with afternoon highs ranging from 105 to 114 degrees in the Central Valley. In the Mother Lode, the highs will range from 95 to 110 degrees. The overnight lows in both the Central Valley and the Mother Lode will range from the upper 60’s to the low eighties. The afternoon highs in the Sierra Nevada mountains will range from 80 to 105 degrees. Any localized dense smoke and haze will impact those temperatures.

Extreme heat and humidity will significantly increase the potential for heat related illnesses, such as heat exhaustion and heat stroke, which can occur due to prolonged exposure to hot temperatures. People most vulnerable include those who spend lots of time outdoors, those without air conditioning, those without adequate hydration young children, the elderly and those with chronic illness.

Drink plenty of fluids, stay in an air-conditioned room, stay out of the sun, and check up on relatives and neighbors. Young children and pets should never be left unattended in vehicles under any circumstances. Take extra precautions if you work or spend time outside. When possible reschedule strenuous activities to early morning or evening. Know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Wear lightweight and loose fitting clothing when possible. To reduce risk during outdoor work, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recommends scheduling frequent rest breaks in shaded or air conditioned environments. Anyone overcome by heat should be moved to a cool and shaded location. Heat stroke is an emergency! Call 9 1 1.

Additionally, the Mariposa County and Tuolumne County Air Pollution Control Districts have issued an Air Quality Alert for both Mariposa and Tuolumne counties, due to smoke impacts from surrounding wildfires.

The Air Quality Alert will likely remain in effect until the fires are extinguished.

Exposure to particle pollution can cause serious health problems, aggravated lung disease, cause asthma attacks and acute bronchitis, and increase risk of respiratory infections. Residents are advised to use caution as conditions warrant, People with heart and lung diseases should follow their doctor`s advice for dealing with episodes of unhealthy air quality. Additionally, older adults and children should avoid prolonged exposure, strenuous activities or heavy exertion, as conditions dictate.

Finally, a Fire Weather Watch has been issued for the Mother Lode, the Stanislaus National Forest and the Northern San Joaquin Valley from Monday evening through Wednesday morning.

After the extended period of hot and dry weather, gusty northerly and easterly winds are possible early next week. Poor humidity recovery is expected during this time frame as well, with daytime humidities falling into the single digits and teens.

Expect northerly and easterly winds. Mountain and foothill winds will be around 20 to 30 mph, with gusts up to 50 mph. Central Valley winds will be around 10 to 20 mph, with gusts up to 30 mph.

Humidity will range from 5 to 20 percent during the day. Overnight humidity will be between 10 and 50 percent. The higher recovery is expected in the Central Valley.

Numerous wild fires are already occurring throughout California. These conditions may impact any ongoing wildfires. Extreme caution should be taken to prevent any additional fires.

A Fire Weather Watch means that critical fire weather conditions are forecast to occur. Continue to monitor for later forecasts and possible Red Flag Warnings.