Heat wave brings sweltering temperatures to L.A. area

Hot temperatures expected to set records in Southern California

Temperatures soared into the 90s Thursday as another heat wave hit Southern California.

As of 3 p.m., Long Beach hit 93 degrees, downtown L.A. hit 90, Woodland Hills hit 91 and Fullerton recorded 95. It was slightly cooler at the beaches, with temperatures in the high 70s and low 80s. 

A half-acre brush fire was reported in La Habra but quickly put out by firefighters.

As high pressure builds over the region and offshore winds develop, a hot air mass will push temperatures up in Southern California.

The record-breaking heat signals a three-month trend of above-normal temperatures for the next three months, forecasters say.

According to the latest U.S. drought report, dry weather worsened or maintained the drought in California, and reduced mountain snowpacks over much of the West.

While mountain ranges in Northern California received more than an inch of rain this week, the rainfall fell short of supplying any significant moisture to relieve the drought, according to meteorologist Eric Luebehusen of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

In California's San Joaquin Valley and the Cascade Range of the Pacific Northwest, water-year precipitation averaged 30% to 50% of normal.

The warmer temperatures will bring strong surf and dangerous rip currents this week to beaches in Los Angeles and Ventura counties, NWS meteorologist Stuart Seto said.

“Right when it’s getting hot, we tell you that you can’t go to the beach,” he said.

Strong swells are expected to thrash south-facing beaches, bringing 3- to 6-foot surf south of Point Conception and 4- to 8-foot surf along the Central Coast.

The potential for rip currents, beach erosion and sneaker waves is high, Seto said.

But the heat wave should be temporary. Cooler temperatures are expected Saturday and Sunday with highs in the 80s, which Seto said is still 10 degrees above normal for this time of year.

For breaking news in California, follow @VeronicaRochaLA 

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times

UPDATE

4:06 p.m. This post has been updated with new temperatures.

2:15 p.m.: This post has been updated with temperatures recorded Thursday afternoon.

62°