Heat smothering California from north to south

Jim Cosgrove takes a break in the shade during the second day of the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, Saturday, Oct. 4, 2014. As high temperatures were ranging from the low 100s in Southern California to the 90s in the normally more temperate San Francisco Bay Area on Friday, National Weather Service forecasters warned it was just a warm-up for what lies ahead this weekend. (AP Photo/San Francisco Chronicle, Jessica Christian).

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A statewide heatwave was expected to east somewhat Sunday, but forecasters predicted that many places in California will still bake in higher than normal temperatures.

The Sacramento and Los Angeles areas were expected to see temperatures in the mid-90s again while the forecast for inland Southern California was again in triple digits, the National Weather Service said.

More significant drops in temperature were expected during the week.

The usually temperate San Francisco Bay Area was even in the upper 90s in several places Saturday.

Many of the thousands who crammed Golden Gate Park in San Francisco for the annual Hardly Strictly Bluegrass festival were chugging water and dumping it on their heads as they danced to banjos and fiddles in the midday swelter. The festival’s final day Sunday will be 5 degrees cooler, forecasters said.

Normally closed for the season by now, the Raging Waters theme park in San Dimas, where it reached 102 degrees Saturday afternoon, was open to provide relief and recreation for another weekend.

In San Jose, some sought icy refuge during the public skating hours of at the Sharks’ hockey practice facility.

“It’s so hot outside. We couldn’t think of anything else to do except to come to the ice rink where it’s not 95 degrees,” Clarissa Harwell told KGO-TV.

Temperatures also made rare trips into triple-digits on the Central Coast in San Luis Obispo and Santa Cruz.

The heat brought a red-flag warning of critical wildfire conditions, the National Weather Service said.

The U.S. Forest Service has implemented 24-hour firefighter staffing. The Los Angeles County Fire Department has beefed up many of its firefighting crews from three to four people and stationed extra equipment in strategic locations.

The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power is urging people to set thermostats at 78 degrees to avoid overtaxing the power grid and bringing on outages.

 

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