Monsoonal moisture brings another day of sweltering heat to Southern California

Dockweiler State Beach
From left, Malise Hall, Jazelle Jackson, Leilani May, Nickki Gregg and Khami Hall check out a sand crab at Dockweiler State Beach on Tuesday. Wednesday’s temperatures are expected to hit triple digits in some parts of Southern California.
(Dania Maxwell / Los Angeles Times)

Grab a hat and crank up your air conditioning, Angelenos, because the Southland’s second heat wave of the summer is reaching its peak.

Some of the week’s highest temperatures are expected Wednesday, with the mercury rising to over 100 degrees in Woodland Hills and the Santa Clarita Valley. The National Weather Service issued a heat advisory through 9 p.m. for the San Fernando and Santa Clarita valleys and the Inland Empire, warning of heat-related illnesses from the combination of high temperatures and humidity.

On Wednesday, much of the Southland woke up to muggy and warm conditions. Overnight temperatures in downtown Los Angeles didn’t drop below 71 degrees, and Burbank hovered around 73 degrees, which is “pretty warm for an overnight low,” said Ryan Kittell, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard.

Downtown L.A. and Long Beach are expected to reach 90 degrees Wednesday, while Burbank could see the mercury hit 96. Temperatures are predicted to be only slightly higher than what the region experienced Tuesday, but given the heat that lingered overnight, it will likely feel a lot hotter, Kittell said.

“It will feel warmer because it’s starting out warmer than yesterday,” he said.

The monsoonal moisture rolling into California from Mexico this week has created some wacky — and record-breaking — summer weather.


Long Beach reached 96 degrees Tuesday, surpassing the daily record of 94 degrees set in 1974, according to the weather service. However, the rise in temperature in the coastal city wasn’t too surprising to meteorologists, given that Long Beach is typically the last place along the coast to get a cooling sea breeze.

“Long Beach is unique in that when there’s a marine layer, they’re going to be cool, but if there isn’t one, they’re typically the hottest along the coast,” Kittell said.

On Tuesday, the monsoon flow produced scattered thunderstorms and slight rainfall in some areas.

Lightning threats prompted lifeguards to briefly clear beaches in Los Angeles County from Malibu to Torrance, but no damage was reported. However, a more severe thunderstorm in Thermal, in the Coachella Valley, brought down power lines and trees, according to fire and emergency management officials.

Scattered thunderstorms still could materialize in the mountains and deserts Wednesday but aren’t expected along the coast, forecasters said.

Temperatures are expected to dip slightly into the weekend but will remain higher than average. Meteorologists predict the hot weather will continue through at least early next week.

“It’s really not much of a cooling trend,” Kittell said. “The humidity should be sticking around for a while. When we have this monsoonal pattern, it definitely feels a lot warmer than it normally is here during the summer.”