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Heat warnings issued for Pacific Northwest as temperatures break records

(NEW YORK) — Excessive heat warnings were in effect for parts of the Pacific Northwest on Tuesday, as temperatures topped 100 degrees.

Portland, Oregon hit 102 degrees, while in Redding, California, temperatures reached 103 degrees. Temperatures in Medford, Oregon, climbed to 107 degrees on Monday.

People in Washington state are also facing extreme temperatures. Seattle hit a record high of 92 degrees on Tuesday, while Spokane reached 98 degrees and will hit triple digits on Wednesday and Thursday.

The extreme heat will persist in the region for the rest of the week, according to the National Weather Service. The record for most consecutive days where temperatures were 95 degrees and up in Portland is six days — this heat wave could break or tie that record.

Oregon’s Department of Emergency Management opened up misting stations and overnight cooling shelters on Tuesday to help residents deal with the dangerous heat.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown declared a state of emergency on Tuesday for 25 of the state’s counties until July 31.

“With many parts of Oregon facing a high heat wave, it is critical that every level of government has the resources they need to help keep Oregonians safe and healthy,” Brown said in a statement. “I encourage everyone to take proactive steps to keep themselves and their families safe, including drinking plenty of fluids, taking advantage of cooling centers, and checking in on neighbors, friends, and loved ones.”

According to a 2021 study, heat waves in the Pacific Northwest would be “virtually impossible” without human-caused climate change.

Smoke from the Oak Fire near Yosemite National Park, which has burned more than 18,000 acres, is spreading into Northern California and southern Oregon. The fire, combined with the heat wave, is causing very poor air quality in the area.

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