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Scorching Heat Grips Bay Area As Temperatures Skyrocket

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- Blazing heat gripped the Bay Area Sunday, sending temperatures soaring into the upper 80s and and low 90s as locals tried to beat the heat.

Record temperatures were reported in San Francisco, Oakland, Half Moon Bay, Monterey and Salinas.

A heat advisory initially issued through 9 p.m. Sunday by the National Weather Service was extended into Monday night.

Residents were advised to take precautions as temperatures rise to the mid-90s or higher in much of the Bay Area.

The first day of the first significant heat wave of 2019 hit the South Bay with temps in the mid 90s, with a triple digit high set for Monday.

Traffic on Highway 17 southbound to Santa Cruz began backing up at 9 a.m. At its peak, the traffic jam stretched for six miles, adding about 45 minutes onto the the drive time.

At Natural Bridges State Beach, the parking lot was full and closed off by 11:30 a.m. Visitors had to park in the surrounding neighborhoods, lugging gear more than a quarter mile. Once on the beach, families were nearly blanket to blanket on the sand.

Darrel Blaschak, visiting the Santa Cruz area from Livermore, said the more than two hour drive is worth the cool breeze of the ocean.

"We live in Livermore and that heat, all of a sudden, it's like 'You know what? It's too hot to play outside.' But the kids love it out here and so we just head to the beach," said Blaschak.

Jessika Sprague, enjoying a glass of rose at Natural Bridges, had little sympathy for anyone roasting the heat back home in Discovery Bay, or in the other parts of the Bay Area.

"Sorry, not sorry. You know where the beach is," Sprague said with a laugh.

In Santa Clara, the city has designated the Central Park as a cooling center on Sundays, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., during normal business hours. Library staff say they notice an uptick in foot traffic on hotter days.

"Out there is very hot," said Fatima Silva, walking into the library's cool 73 degree air.

At the water fountains at Plaza de Cesar Chavez in downtown San Jose, dozens of families played in the filtered water jets that shoot more than 6 feet into the air.

Seven-year-old Jesus Roseles said the water felt "soft and cold."

One problem with unseasonable heat in San Francisco is the fact the many people do not have air conditioning.

At Baker Beach Sunday, the shoreline was packed with people taking in the breeze and dreading going back home.

Stu Mosseau was enjoying the beach, but at home he has, "a nice, big industrial fan, that's it." He anticipates going home will be "probably unbearable."

Jordan Daniel, also at the beach and also without air conditioning, described her plan for the evening, "You have to just ditch your down comforter, ditch your sheets, open the window, and just try to drink a lot of water. And hope to fall asleep."

Hot weather tips from the San Francisco Department of Emergency Management include:

  • Drink plenty of water, wear a hat if you go outside and apply sunscreen.
  • Never leave kids/pets in a vehicle for any reason for any length of time. Temperatures will rapidly rise to dangerous levels. If headed to the beach, remember that rip currents are always a danger.
  • Check on neighbors, friends and family that may be sensitive to heat. Call 9-1-1 immediately if you or someone you know is having a medical emergency.

Sunday is also a Spare the Air smog alert day and a Spare the Air has also been issued for Monday, the first two alerts of 2019.

"Hot inland temperatures, light winds and motor vehicle exhaust from millions of motor vehicles on Bay Area roads will continue to cause unhealthy ozone accumulation in the region," advises the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, which encourages the public to avoid driving if possible.

© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. and Bay City News Service. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed

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