As heat set in across the West from what could be a record-breaking heat wave, some flights at Las Vegas airport were canceled due to high temperatures on Friday.
“It’s always hot, but it’s not always that hot,” said Clay Morgan, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Las Vegas, who called the heat unusual and is approaching records of all time.
The city could match a record-high level of 117 degrees this weekend, he said. This has only happened four times, most recently in 2017.
The temperature rose to within a degree on Friday when it was 116 degrees at McCarran International Airport. There were flight delays and some cancellations at the airport due to the heat.
The Federal Aviation Administration implemented a traffic management program due to heat and wind, the agency and the airport said.
Southwest Airlines told frustrated passengers on Twitter that a number of its flights out of Las Vegas were canceled due to extreme heat. The airline did not immediately respond to a request for comment Friday night about how many were affected.
Excessive heat warnings covered much of the western United States Friday from California and southeastern Oregon to parts of Utah and Arizona.
There is a large, high-pressure dome centered over the region that causes very hot temperatures in many parts of the West, Morgan said of the weather service.
The airport in Grand Junction, Colorado, experienced a record high of 1
Last month was the hottest June on record, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has said.
And the heat in the northwest Pacific was deadly. 86 people had died due to heat in Oregon as of Friday, the Oregon medical office said in a statement released by state police, and 32 other deaths were under investigation.
In light of the high heat of the weekend, California officials urged residents to save energy, and refrigeration centers around the state were open.
A state “flex alarm,” which is a call for conservation of electricity, was extended to Saturday in light of high heat and a wildfire in southeastern Oregon that threatened transmission lines.
It was 100 degrees in Sacramento just after noon Friday. The Sacramento County Office of Emergency Services warned of dangerous heat over the weekend.
On Friday, Death Valley recorded a high temperature of 130 degrees, but the reading is considered preliminary and not yet validated, the weather service said. But what was not in doubt was the danger.
“Pay attention to these warnings,” it tweeted in all capital letters. “Do not endanger yourself or first responders this weekend!
Death Valley holds the world record for the warmest temperature on earth ever, which was 134 degrees on July 10, 1913.
The world heat record at all times was considered to be 136 degrees in Libya on September 13, 1922. But the World Meteorological Organization conducted a study and invalidated this record in 2012, with a panel concluding that it was due to an error in the recording temperature .