West, East ends of Peninsula expected to bake

Forks residents excited by prospect of warmth, sunshine

SEATTLE — The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory beginning today and extending through Monday for the West End and much of Western Washington saying that temperatures will soar into the low 90s for Forks, La Push, Neah Bay and other areas down the Pacific coast to Portland, Ore., as well as South County communities such as Quilcene and Brinnon.

At the same time, temperatures will be more restrained for the central part of the Peninsula, with high temperatures in Port Angeles, Sequim and Port Townsend expected to reach only the high 70s.

The National Weather Service has said that a strong ridge of high pressure is moving into the area, with an upper level low coming in Monday to put a lid on temperatures.

Easterly winds tend to develop during heat events, said Jacob DeFlitch, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Seattle. Those dry, sloping winds flow down the sides of the Olympic Mountains, while winds off the Strait of Juan de Fuca will keep temperatures somewhat cooler in the center.

“It’s still on the warmer side,” DeFlitch said. “Temperatures will be 10 to 15 degrees above normal through at least Thursday.”

People in Forks are excited by the prospect of higher temperatures, according to Lissy Andros, executive director of the Forks Chamber of Commerce.

“Everyone’s so happy to have sun and heat,” she said Friday, adding that residents are fed up with cool, cloudy days.

“A lot of yard work is going to get done,” Andros said.

The mood is the same at Forks city offices, but in recognition of the danger higher heat can have for some, the Clallam Transit center at 551 S. Forks Ave., will open during the daytime to provide shelter and water.

Also, the Forks Library, 171 S. Forks Ave., will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Monday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.

In East Jefferson County, it was not known by noon Friday if cooling centers will be set up.

Statewide information on cooling centers can be found through calling 2-1-1.

Other recommendations for heat safety include:

• Stay indoors and in an air-conditioned environment as much as possible.

• Keep your home cool by closing windows and shades during daylight hours. Use your stove and oven less to keep temperatures cooler inside.

• Check on your friends, family, and neighbors before bedtime. Assist those who are vulnerable or at higher risk, neighbors who are elderly, ill, or may need help.

• Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of non-alcoholic fluids but don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink.

• Keep outdoor pets safe in the heat and make sure they have protection from heat. Walk on grass instead of asphalt, which can burn your pet’s paws. Never leave people or pets in a parked vehicle.

• Take frequent breaks when working outdoors. Wear wide-brimmed hats, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing, and protect your skin from sunburn.

• Do not rely on a fan as your only cooling source. While electric fans might provide some comfort, they won’t prevent heat-related illness when temperatures are very hot.

• If you notice symptoms of heat illness (dizziness, nausea, headaches, muscle cramps), act immediately. Move to a cooler location to rest for a few minutes and seek medical attention right away if you do not feel better.

• Avoid extreme temperature changes. Warm temperatures do not necessarily mean warm water. Rivers and lakes are still very cold this time of year, and jumping into cold open water can result in shock, arrhythmias, and drowning. Cold showers combined with hot body temperatures can cause hypothermia, especially for elders and children. Ease into temperature changes.

• Follow water safety tips if you go swimming or boating. Remember swimming in open water is very different from swimming in a pool. Make sure to wear a life jacket that fits you.

• Check for restrictions or warnings in your area before lighting outdoor fires. High temperatures and dry conditions increase wildfire risk.


Executive Editor Leah Leach can be reached at 360-417-3530 or at lleach@peninsuladailynews.com.

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