The worst of a record Southern California heat wave still to come. What you need to know

The downtown Los Angeles skyline shimmers in the smog as a plane taking off from Long Beach Airport climbs out of the haze.
The downtown Los Angeles skyline shimmers in the smog as a plane taking off from Long Beach Airport climbs out of the haze Thursday after another hot day across Southern California. A brutal heat wave is expected to last through the Labor Day weekend.
(Luis Sinco / Los Angeles Times)
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The worst heat wave of the year will continue to broil Southern California at least until Wednesday.

Here is a rundown of what to expect:

The forecast

Saturday and Sunday will see “high” and “very high” heat levels in many areas, said Tom Fisher, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard.

But Sunday will probably bring the heat wave’s most intense temperatures.

The high-pressure system over most of California is expected to bring record-breaking temperatures, part of a “self-perpetuating” system that is becoming more extreme as climate change worsens.

Aug. 31, 2022

Heat warnings have been issued for inland and valley areas — which will see triple-digit temperatures with some places topping 110 degrees — but also some coastal cities where temperatures will reach into the 90s.


“A prolonged period of very hot conditions with minimal coastal clouds is expected as high pressure aloft remains anchored over the West,’’ the National Weather Service said. “Triple-digit heat will be common for many valley and mountain locations through early next week. Record-breaking heat will produce a very high risk of heat illness.’’

Sweltering temperatures will continue into next week, with some cooling expected by midweek.

Some inland areas have set daily temperature records for the last three days.

Energy grid challenges

The California Independent System Operator, which manages the power grid, has extended a Flex Alert into Saturday, officials announced Friday evening.

During a Flex Alert, consumers are asked to conserve energy from 4 to 9 p.m., hours when the grid is most stressed. Officials have warned rolling blackouts are possible during the heat wave due to excessive demand.

Though some progress has been made, there have also been setbacks, including some proposed state legislation that has stalled.

Sept. 3, 2022

Here is a guide for how to save energy during Flex Alerts.


As Angelenos sweat through extreme temperatures, workers are doing whatever they can to cool off, from drinking two gallons of water to wearing ice packs and a fan.

Sept. 2, 2022

Here is a guide for how to stay safe during heat waves.