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Cooling stations help Lodi, Galt brace long heat wave

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Posted: Monday, July 1, 2013 1:33 pm

With a high over 100 degrees for the fourth straight day, Lodi and Galt both opened cooling centers Monday to make sure residents survive an unrelenting heat wave.

The grinding heat that started last Friday will not end anytime soon. Lodi’s high was 107 Monday, and a high of 108 is expected today. Highs at or above 100 are now expected through Saturday. After a dip into the mid-90s on Sunday, temperatures will start climbing again.

The National Weather Service extended its excessive heat warning through Thursday.

The oppressive heat prompted community leaders to take the unusual move of opening cooling centers.

In Lodi, Kirst Hall at Hutchins Street Square and the Lodi Public Library will serve as cooling centers through Wednesday. However, no one took advantage of the cooling center at Hutchins Street Square on Monday, event attendant Mamrez Khan said.

The library was crowded Monday, but not any more than a typical day, said library employee Nancy Massie and administrative secretary Sandra Brage.

Lodi’s cooling centers were announced on www.lodinews.com shortly after noon.

In Galt, Chabolla Community Center will be open today and perhaps longer if the needed. The city will probably open Littleton Community Center, 380 Civic Drive, Galt, according to City Clerk Liz Aguire.

The San Joaquin Valley is just one part of a record-setting Western heat wave, according to Ken Clark, a meteorologist for AccuWeather.com, a private weather forecasting firm.

“Something this large and this intense doesn’t occur very often,” he said.

A huge dome of high pressure, which originated in Texas, has expanded and moved west. From Arizona, through the Valley, all the way into southern Canada, heat records are being set.

Death Valley reached 129 degrees Sunday, tying the highest temperature ever recorded for June in the United States. Las Vegas set an all-time high Sunday, reaching 117 degrees. Boise, Idaho hit a record 104 degrees. And this week, Salt Lake City, cities throughout eastern Oregon, the province of Alberta in Canada and many more are expected to break records as well, Clark said.

In Lodi, temperatures this week are supposed to flirt with but not surpass records.

Since Friday, temperatures have reached triple digits. Temperatures Wednesday through Friday are supposed to stay around 106, before a small marine layer moves in Friday and drops temperatures into the 90s this weekend, Clark said.

“People really need to be cautious in this kind of weather,” Clark said.

News-Sentinel staff writer Ross Farrow contributed to this report.

Contact reporter Kristopher Anderson at krisa@lodinews. com.

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