Brutal heat wave continues in Riverside County

Brutal temperatures and a heat advisory urging caution are expected to continue through Monday in Riverside County, according to the National Weather Service.  

Building high pressure over the southwestern United States have ushered in scorching temperatures for the next five to six days, forecasters said.  

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The NWS issued an excessive heat warning that will be in effect through 9 p.m. Monday in the Riverside metropolitan area, the Riverside County mountains, the San Gorgonio Pass near Banning and the Coachella Valley.  

The NWS urged residents to drink plenty of fluids, stay out of the sun and check up on relatives and neighbors. Also, young children, seniors and pets should be never be left unattended in a vehicle, with car interiors able to "reach lethal temperatures in a matter of minutes," according to the NWS.  

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High temperatures Saturday were forecast to reach 119 in the Coachella Valley, 117 in the San Gorgonio Pass near Banning, 108 in Hemet, 109 in Riverside, 106 in Lake Elsinore, 101 in Temecula and 93 in Idyllwild.   Highs in the Coachella Valley were forecast to remain around 116 through Wednesday, according to the NWS.

The mercury in the Riverside metropolitan area was expected to top out around 110 in some communities Saturday, then remain in the mid-to-high 100s through Thursday.  

Palm Springs and Thermal tied high-temperature records for an Aug. 13on Thursday, according to the NWS. Palm Springs recorded a high of 116 and the mercury reached 117 in Thermal, each matching their respective records from 2012.  

Riverside County has 14 cooling centers available countywide with mandatory mask-wearing and social distancing protocols in place.  

Among the 14 locations, five are in the Coachella Valley, two in the Banning Pass, one in Moreno Valley, one in Temecula and five in Riverside.  

A full list of the cooling center locations can be found at  

The Apple Fire, which burned 33,424-acres in the San Bernardino National Forest including a portion of the San Gorgonio Pass near Banning, was 90% contained as of Saturday night.  

Winds out of the west Saturday were expected to be around 15 mph in that area, with 25 mph gusts possible throughout the day, forecasters said.  

U.S. Forest Service officials said the gusty winds and increasing temperatures through the weekend could pose a challenge to containment efforts, but fire lines passed the test of winds earlier in the week and full containment is expected Monday.