Unseasonable Heat Wave Grips Southern California

Hot, dry and windy conditions prompted warnings about increased fire danger

This week's unseasonable mid-October heat wave is expected to loosen its grip on Southern California by Friday.

In the meantime, the week's highest temperatures were expected Wednesday, with only slightly cooler conditions Thursday.

Projected temperatures for Wednesday were 15 to 20 degrees above normal in many areas, with highs between 95 and 102 degrees in the valleys, according to the National Weather Service.

NBCLA weather: forecast, maps, radar

The weather service said records for Oct. 17 were unusually high -- so no new highs were expected to be set Wednesday, though records may be broken Thursday.

The hot and dry conditions – along with very dry fuels – had prompted warnings about elevated fire danger across the region through Thursday. A blaze in the Los Padres National Forest Wednesday prompted a quick response.

For mountain, foothill and desert areas of San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange and San Diego counties, the National Weather Service issued a "hazardous weather outlook" because of the fire danger.


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In Pasadena, calls to reduce electricity consumption and prepare for rolling blackouts amid the heat wave were issued after a fire at a power plant left the city with much reduced generating capacity. 

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