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Lodi could face scorching heat, lower air quality

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Posted: Monday, July 7, 2008 10:00 pm

The Lodi-Galt area could endure record-breaking temperatures today and Wednesday as a massive heat wave descends on the Central Valley.

And some of the smoke that made people cough and made buildings look yellowish-brown two weeks ago will return to the Valley.

Today's high is expected to range from 106 to 108 degrees, which would break the July 8 record of 104, set way back in 1932, according to AccuWeather.com, a private forecasting firm. Records were available only for Stockton Metropolitan Airport.

On Wednesday, temperatures could reach 110, breaking the July 9 record of 107 set in 1961, according to AccuWeather.com.

The low tonight is expected to be a balmy 67 degrees, and Wednesday night, it will "cool" to 64 degrees.

The city of Lodi has set up a cooling center from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. through Friday in the Pisano Room at Hutchins Street Square, 125 N. Hutchins St. Books, board games and water will be available. Senior citizens may also cool off at the senior center.

In Galt, the city had not established a cooling center by Monday afternoon, but one will be set up if the Office of Emergency Services recommends it, said City Clerk Liz Aguire.

It is unclear whether the smoke that caused people to cough frequently two weeks ago will be as intense this week. There are conflicting reasons why it may or may not happen, according to Shawn Ferreria, senior air quality specialist for the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District.

How hot will it get?

Well, that depends on whether you rely on AccuWeather.com, a private forecasting firm, or the National Weather Service. Actual temperatures vary, but both agencies agree about one thing - it will be HOT. Lows all week will be in the mid to high 60s.

It won't get below the century mark until at least Saturday. And you'll love it a week from today - a forecast balmy 93 degrees.

Here is this week's forecast for the Lodi area:

Forecast Temperatures for Lodi
Day National Weather Service AccuWeather.com
108 106
109 110
107 106
101 103
96 99
96 96

For air quality information, visit www.valleyair.org. Smoke alerts will be posted on the home page. For further information, click on "air quality information" in the left-hand column.

- News-Sentinel staff

On the one hand, a couple of wildland fires that sent smoke toward Lodi - in Napa-Solano counties and in Merced-Mariposa counties - are now contained, Ferreria said. That should reduce the smoke coming toward Lodi.

On the other hand, the high-pressure system that is responsible for the heat wave this week is more intense than the weather system that created the smoke-filled airways two weeks ago, Ferreria said. So that is a reason the smoke could be worse.

"The air quality will continue to deteriorate the next few days," Ferreria said. "If you see smoke or smell smoke, you should limit outdoor activity as much as possible."

Lodi Dr. John Connolly, a lung specialist, said that seniors, children, smokers and people with asthma or other breathing problems should refrain from being outdoors as much as possible.

"I don't know if it makes big difference if you have healthy lungs," Connolly said.

Local electrical providers said they are ready for the onslaught of air conditioner use and will do whatever possible to keep power on. George Morrow, Lodi Electric Utility director, acknowledged that there could be some isolated power outages, but he will have all his equipment and employees ready to respond to any outages.

Spokeswoman Nicole Tam from Pacific Gas and Electric Co., which provides electricity to rural areas outside Lodi, advises people to conserve energy during hottest times of day. For example, do your laundry or dishwashing in the morning or after 6 p.m. The same applies for other large appliances.

The heat and smoke won't keep construction workers expanding Lodi Memorial Hospital from working, even at 110 degrees, according to Nick Layton, a carpenter for HMH builders.

However, the hospital may excuse workers if the weather becomes oppressive since construction is ahead of schedule, said Lodi Memorial spokeswoman Carol Farron.

Layton said that HMH officials make sure their workers do not become overheated. Two covered tents provide workers with welcome shade and ice water.

"If you go on the roof, tell someone you're up there," Layton said.

That is to prevent someone from passing out on the roof with anybody knowing it, he added.

Contact reporter Ross Farrow at rossf@lodinews.com.

What have you been doing to stay healthy with the high temperatures and poor air quality?

Tiffany Hall
"I'm staying inside with the air conditioner, drinking lots of water."
Barbara Johnson
"Drink a lot of water, stay inside and leave town."
Lamont Bohoman
"I just stay in the shade and mind my own business. I also try to stay organic too."
Farrah Amin
"I'm eating lots of fruits and drinking lots of water."
Tim Greenmyer
"I stay in the shade and drink a lot of iced tea. I drink lots of water."

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Welcome to the discussion.


  • posted at 2:44 pm on Tue, Jul 8, 2008.


    Glad I don't have to ride those smelly, hot Grapeline buses the city has pawned off to MV Transportation and forces both riders and passengers to put up with those kinds of conditions. C, mon union drivers, refuse to drive these vehicles without air conditioning and stand up for yourselves, and mainly, your passengers who depend on you.

  • posted at 12:27 pm on Tue, Jul 8, 2008.


    Glad i dont work outside like the city crews i saw today doing hot asphalt work in the smoke and heat. Thanks for risking your lives to keep our town nice.

  • posted at 10:55 am on Tue, Jul 8, 2008.


    The Bus drivers now have a UNION! Does the Union have any power at all? Are they here now to collect UNION DUES from driver's paycheck? Safety is non-Negotiable! Large lodi city buses that drive with ALL the windows open, are "Blast Furnaces" for the drivers passengers, Seniors, those pregnant or with children, the disabled, and those on medication! We Need BUSES that can run their A/C without the engine shutting down! Do people have to die before replacement "Leased Buses" can be approved by the city council! DRIVERS, Call CHP Mike Campoy 948-7255 press ext 211 and leave message!

  • posted at 10:48 am on Tue, Jul 8, 2008.


    It shouldn't beexpensive for the to "Lease at least SEVERAL buses that can run their Air conditioning in the summer months without BREAKING DOWN. Does LNS reporters have the "Guts" to blow this "Defective safety situation" wide open and help the passengers get more reliable buses? Call CHP Officer Mike Campoy, CHP Safety Inspector 948-7255 press ext. 211 when prompted to leave a message about riding in a "BLAST FURNACE in the big buses! It's easy to feel cold air at 10am when parked. CHP, please do surprise safety checks on Bus Routes #2,4 #5 after 2PM!

  • posted at 10:40 am on Tue, Jul 8, 2008.


    It is a Very Dangerous situation for the Bus drivers, passengers, (Esp. Seniors,children and those on medication) and any vehicle near the bus should the bus driver pass out from heat exhaustion. To express your concerns to the California Highway Patrol Inspection Unit please call 948-7255 Press exy #211 when prompted! Obviously if ALL the windows on a city bus are wide open it is PROOF their air conditioning unit is OFF! It's been that way for the last 4 years each summer! I dare the city council to ride the big buses after 2pm this week!

  • posted at 6:57 am on Tue, Jul 8, 2008.


    i hate summer!!=]

  • posted at 3:29 am on Tue, Jul 8, 2008.


    Accuweather has revised the temp today to 110 degrees which in my book, means, that tomorrow will be even hotter. Ugh!http://www.accuweather.com/us/ca/lodi/95240/city-weather-forecast.asp?partner=accuweather&u=1&traveler=0



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