Sweltering high summer temperatures in the Las Vegas Valley could tie or exceed records on Saturday and Sunday and an excessive heat warning for the area will remain in effect until Tuesday, according to the National Weather Service.
For Saturday, there is a 30 percent chance the record high for the day of 114 degrees will be equalled or greater and a 45 percent chance that the mercury will hit or exceed the record of 116 for Sunday, said Matt Woods, a weather service meteorologist in Las Vegas.
“It looks like the heat is going to peak on Sunday, but it’s going to last through the weekend and into early next week,” Woods said. “We’ll probably see some daily records broken this weekend or at least tied.”
“We’re currently expecting 115 on Monday, so slightly cooler than Sunday, but you’re really not going to notice it,” he said. “It’s still going to be dangerously hot out there.”
The record high for Monday is 116 and there is a 35 percent chance that temperatures could reach or exceed that, he said.
As for lows, “generally we’re looking at 90 to possibly like 92 degrees like Monday, so you’re not going to get really any relief overnight,” Woods said,
The meteorological explanation for why temperatures are in record tying or breaking levels in the valley this year is “a big, strong area of high pressure that’s building over the southwestern U.S.,” Woods said. “This is one of the stronger high pressure systems that we’ve had or forecasting to have over Las Vegas. One of the stronger ones we’ve had on record.”
What about Death Valley, Calif., the capital of high temperatures in the Southwest?
Woods said that the highest level ever recorded there of 134 degrees, measured in 1913 and recognized by the World Meteorological Organization, is in no danger of being broken, as the weather service is forecasting a high of 129 there on Sunday.
For expected extreme heat period of today through Monday, Clark County has opened cooling stations to serve a refuges from the weather, including eight recreation centers in Las Vegas, two in Henderson, two in Laughlin and one in Mesquite and 25 public libraries in Las Vegas, Bunkerville, Goodsprings, Indian Springs, Laughlin, Searchlight, Mesquite, Moapa, Moapa Valley, Sandy Valley and Mt. Charleston.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.