Heat dome creates record-breaking temperatures across Southern California


Chris Rodriguez

Images taken from NextHome Real Estate Rockstars realtor Chris Rodriguez during the Castaic fires on Aug. 31, 2022, in Castaic, Calif.

Carly Pellot, Reporter

Southern California has experienced extreme heat as of late August, including temperatures as high as 110 throughout Los Angeles.

Due to the recent dry heat, Southern California has experienced various brush fires. On Aug. 31, the Route Fire in Castaic spread over 5,000 acres along Interstate 5. Sections of the I-5 were also closed temporarily. In response to the Route Fire, CSUN Department of Police Services notified students via email on Sept. 1.

“Students whose travel to campus is impacted should notify their instructors and employees needing assistance should contact their manager,” stated the email.

According to an article from CBS Los Angeles, the fire also caused numerous evacuations, including students and staff of Northlake Hills Elementary School, residents of Paradise Ranch Estates, and structures near Lake Hughes Road.

According to the federal government’s Incident Information System, as of Sept. 5, the fire has been contained and evacuation orders have been lifted.

Los Angeles County has also experienced what is known as a heat dome. According to an article from Scientific American, heat dome is a term used to describe hot air trapped over a large area. Heat is then enclosed high in the atmosphere, pushing air down and forming a dome of trapped heat. The heat dome then leads to heat waves of consistently high temperatures.

Between the heat dome and various brush fires, the power grid in California has been put to the test. According to an article from CalMatters, the power grid could exceed 51,000 megawatts. On Aug. 31, Gov. Gavin Newsom declared a state of emergency and asked Californians to conserve energy as the state’s electricity neared its limit.

On Sept. 6, Newsom’s office published a press release urging Californians to reduce power from 4-9 p.m. It also gave tips for dealing with extreme heat, including wearing lightweight clothing and sunscreen when outdoors, avoiding drinks that contain caffeine or alcohol, and knowing the signs of heat exhaustion when checking on friends and family.