Heat wave expected to bake Los Angeles by Thursday

A heat wave is coming to Los Angeles that will send temperatures into the triple digits for some communities by the weekend, the National Weather Service said Monday.

Angelenos will see temperatures jump 15 to 20 degrees from Monday to Thursday, when a high-pressure system from Texas is expected to reach the Southland’s deserts and mountains, said Stuart Seto, a weather specialist with the NWS.

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The hardest-hit areas will be traditional hot spots like Woodland Hills and Burbank, where temperatures by the weekend could top out at 103 and 98 degrees, respectively, Seto said. Downtown Los Angeles will bake in above-average heat Saturday and Sunday, when temperatures could hit 91 degrees, Seto said.

The temperatures, though not record-breaking, are still about 10 degrees above average for this time of year, Seto said. The weather for the last week has been cooler than average, he added.

If Southern Californians need another reason to hit the beach this weekend, the water is also unseasonably warm, Seto said. The water at the Santa Monica Pier on Sunday was a tropical 74 degrees; it was 71 degrees in Marina del Rey, he said. The warmth of the waters is expected to persist through the week.

But the heat brings an increased risk of fire in the drought-parched mountains and hills. Though humidity is not expected to drop low enough to trigger wildfire warnings, years of drought and 10- to 20-mph winds expected this weekend can turn any spark into a dangerous fire, Seto said.

There are more than 10,000 state and federal firefighters battling more than a dozen blazes across California, most of them in the northern half of the state.

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