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It was only a matter of time before the June heat really took hold, and that time is about to arrive in a big way.

The Phoenix metro area, along with other desert areas of southern and central Arizona, will be under an excessive-heat warning issued by the National Weather Service beginning Saturday and continuing into the middle of next week.

Soaring temperatures will peak on Tuesday, when Phoenix is expected to hit 120 degrees, according to the National Weather Service, which issued the official warning Wednesday.

Excessive-heat warnings are put in place when the predicted high temperature is significantly higher than the typical high temperature, NWS officials said.

For example, a 108-degree high temperature wouldn’t spark an excessive-heat warning for this week because the average temperature typically is around 105 degrees, said NWS meteorologist James Sawtelle.

The NWS said an abnormally strong ridge of high pressure will build over Arizona, which will compress the air and increase the heat above normal. In addition, high pressure means clear skies, so the sun will shine in full force.

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Thursday’s predicted high temperature is 108 with a low temperature of 77. The dial turns up slightly on Friday with a high of 109 and a low of 79.

The excessive-heat warning kicks in on Saturday, which will see high temperatures of 111 and a low of 82.

You might want to think twice about an outdoor barbecue for dad on Father’s Day. Temperatures will keep climbing on Sunday, with a high of 114 and low of 86. 

Things don’t fare any better on Monday, when temperatures will reach 119 degrees with a low of 89. 


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The heat will reach its peak on Tuesday, with the forecast predicting a high of 120 degrees, which would flirt with the official all-time high ever recorded in Phoenix — 122 degrees, on June 26, 1990. The low Wednesday is expected to be 89 degrees.

A slight cooldown (relatively speaking) occurs on Wednesday, which will see a high temperature of 117.

The average high temperature for the period is 105 degrees, the Weather Service said.

The heat warning will stay in effect until next Wednesday evening, Sawtelle said, adding that the five-day stretch of excessive heat is slightly longer than a typical heat advisory.


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Even cooler parts of day will be hot

Sawtelle advised residents and visitors alike to use an “abundance of extra caution” when doing daily activities during the excessive-heat wave. He recommended against any strenuous outdoor activity such as work, hiking or other types of outdoor exercise.

“Even cooler parts of the day are really not all that cool,” Sawtelle said. “So people who normally can get away with doing chores or exercise routines during the cooler part of the day, they may not be as lucky during this excessive-heat warning.”

Sawtelle encouraged folks to stay hydrated, wear loose-fitting clothing and show extra caution for children and the elderly. 

The highest official temperature ever recorded in Arizona was 128 degrees in Lake Havasu City, on June 29, 1994.


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