EcoAlert: 113! L.A.’s hottest day ever

Heat wave-jj-001 The National Weather Service's thermometer downtown reached 113 degrees for the first time since records began being kept in 1877 — and then stopped working. The record highs follow a summer of record lows.

The National Weather Service's thermometer for downtown Los Angeles headed into uncharted territory at 12:15 p.m. Monday, reaching 113 degrees for the first time since records began being kept in 1877. Shortly after that banner moment, the temperature dipped back to 111, and then climbed back to 112. Then at 1 p.m., the thermometer stopped working.

The weather service office in Oxnard, reports the LA Times, rushed an electronics technician 60 miles southeast to the USC campus to repair the thermometer, which is actually a highly sensitive wire connected to electronic equipment. Because of the snafu, officials said it's possible Monday's temperature actually was hotter than 113 — but they might never know.

Downtown L.A. was not the only record breaker: Long Beach tied an all-time record of 111. Other cities didn't break all-time records but registered new highs for the day. They include Burbank (110), Woodland Hills (111), Oxnard (100), El Cajon (109) and Indio (109).

"Five days ago, we saw some of the lowest daytime temperatures we've seen in 50 years. And today was a once-in-a-century day," said Bill Patzert, a climatologist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge. "So anybody that thinks Southern California doesn't have weather, we definitely have had a major exhibition by Mother Nature in the last five days."

Via http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-hottest-ever-20100928,0,4108269,print.story

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