Oregon’s largest city broke the all-time heat record for Saturday. The new record could be broken on Sunday.
According to forecasters, many Pacific Northwest communities could experience the hottest days of their lives as temperatures soar during a heatwave that has left residents scrambling to find relief.
Portable air conditioners and fans were sold out in stores, hospitals cancelled outdoor vaccination clinics, cooling centers were opened by cities, baseball teams cancelled or moved up weekend games, utilities prepared for power outages.
According to the National Weather Service, Portland, Oregon reached 108°F (42.2° Celsius) Saturday afternoon. The previous heat record for Oregon’s largest city was at 107 F (41.7 C), which was set in 1965 and 1981.
Seattle reached 101 F (38.3 C Saturday), making it the hottest day of June on record. It was also the fourth time that the normally temperate city has surpassed 100 degrees.
On Sunday and Monday, the forecast called for even higher temperatures. There are many all-time records for heat that could be broken. The highest ever recorded temperature in Seattle was 103 F (39.4 C) in 2009.
Other towns and cities from the east coast of Washington to Portland, Oregon, were also likely to set records. Temperatures in many places could reach 30 degrees above normal.
This is dangerous for a region that is used to mild weather and where many people don’t have air conditioner.
Kristie Ebi, an associate professor at the University of Washington, spoke of the possibility of a warmer future. She studies the effects of climate change on weather patterns around the world and the global warming that has reshaped them.
We know from evidence all over the globe that climate change is increasing heat waves’ intensity, duration and frequency. She said that we will have to accept this change going forward.
James Bryant, a Seattle resident bought an air conditioner to combat the heat.
“My house is already very hot so I have to add heat for the next few days. Bryant stated that Bryant had to ensure their safety. It seems to be a trend… It seems to be a trend.
Multnomah County officials in Oregon were looking for volunteers to staff cooling centers. The purpose of the cooling centers was to provide relief for older residents, homeless people and other individuals who are suffering from heat exhaustion. Cascades Street Outreach is an advocacy group for those experiencing homelessness. They were going to the homeless camps to encourage them to use the cooling centres.
Peter Tiso works for Multnomah County’s Joint office of Homeless Services. He told the Oregonian/OregonLive.com the Oregon Convention Center can accommodate about 300 people but that no one will be turned down from the cooling shelter. He said that pets are allowed in the shelter.