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Southwest heatwave sees record temperatures in several locations

Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver, and California’s Death Valley all posted record temperatures on Saturday.

A record high for June 11 of 122 F (50 C) reached in Death Valley, California. Credit - Tuxyso, CC SA 3.0.
A record high for June 11 of 122 F (50 C) reached in Death Valley, California. Credit - Tuxyso, CC SA 3.0.

Phoenix, Las Vegas, Denver, and California’s Death Valley posted record temperatures on Saturday, as dangerous heat swept across the American Southwest.

The National Weather Service in Phoenix reported a temperature of 114 degrees Fahrenheit (46 degrees Celsius), tying the record high for the date set back in 1918. Las Vegas tied a record for the day set in 1956, with temperatures soaring to 109 F (43 C).

In Colorado, Denver hit 100 F (38 C), tying a record set in 2013 for both the high temperature and the earliest calendar day to reach 100 F. However, the National Weather Service said there was a chance the high temperatures in both cities could rise even more.

Temperatures in several inland areas of California reached triple digits by the afternoon, reports ABC News, with a record high for June 11 of 122 F (50 C) reached in Death Valley.

The scorching heat in Northern California was expected to subside Saturday evening. Heat advisories in parts of Southern California were extended through Sunday. Meteorologists also warned of a very high “heat risk” in south-central Arizona through the weekend. 

The high temperatures were likely to approach record-breaking territory — anywhere between 110 F (43 C) and 115 F (46 C). Meteorologists have urged the public to limit outdoor activities, according to US News.

Heat is part of the normal routine of summertime in the desert, but weather forecasters say that doesn’t mean people should feel at ease. Excessive heat causes more deaths in the U.S. than other weather-related disasters, including hurricanes, floods and tornadoes combined

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Written By

Karen Graham is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for environmental news. Karen's view of what is happening in our world is colored by her love of history and how the past influences events taking place today. Her belief in man's part in the care of the planet and our environment has led her to focus on the need for action in dealing with climate change. It was said by Geoffrey C. Ward, "Journalism is merely history's first draft." Everyone who writes about what is happening today is indeed, writing a small part of our history.

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