Extreme Heat Wave in Western U.S. to Shatter Records and Affect More Than 40 Million People
Triple-digit temperatures are on the horizon for people living in California, Nevada, Arizona, Montana, and Utah
It's shaping up to be a hot start to the summer.
According to AccuWeather, new temperature records will be set this week as soaring temperatures roll over the Western United States. Excessive heat warnings have already been issued for parts of California, Nevada, Arizona, Montana, and Utah, and are expected to last into the weekend.
More than 40 million residents across the U.S. may be affected by this week's rising temperatures, the Washington Post reported.
"Temperature departures from the Southwest to Montana can average 10-20 degrees Fahrenheit above normal," AccuWeather Lead Long-Range Meteorologist Paul Pastelok said. "Some areas will even have temperatures up to 25 degrees above normal."
In Death Valley, Calif., air temperatures could reach 134 degrees Fahrenheit, the current highest recorded temperature on the planet, AccuWeather said.
Las Vegas, one of the largest tourist hubs on the West Coast, may experience highs only seen periodically over the last century.
"A five-day stretch of max temperatures at or above 113 has only occurred five times in Las Vegas for the period of record dating back to 1937," said the National Weather Service in Las Vegas, as cited by the Post.
"We have not been this hot in 80 years. ...If some people think it has been hot the past few days, it's just going up from here," they added to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.
According to the Weather Channel, Las Vegas is expected to hit 117 degrees on Wednesday.
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The excessive heat is also raising fears of more wildfires, of which there are already more than 20 active in the Western U.S., Axios said.
According to Cal Fire, California is experiencing a 26 percent rise in wildfire activity compared to last year. There has also been a 58 percent increase in acres burned.