Many parts of Southern California hit new high-temperature marks Friday, with a few spots reaching the hottest readings ever recorded.
Among the places that set all-time records were Van Nuys Airport (117 degrees), Burbank Airport (114), UCLA (111), Santa Ana (114) and Ramona (115), according to the National Weather Service. Riverside tied its all-time high temperature of 118.
Downtown Los Angeles hit a new high for the day, at 108. Long Beach Airport hit 108 and Woodland Hills, 118.
The heat wave will continue this weekend, but forecasters said Friday marked the peak.
The broiling temperatures were the result of a strong high-pressure system combined with offshore winds blowing from the desert to the ocean, said Todd Hall, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard.
Like many Southern Californians, Hall does not have air conditioning at home and was not looking forward to leaving his nice, cool office.
By midmorning Friday, it was already 105 degrees in Los Feliz as Zeneith Evenstar heaved a shopping cart full of her belongings uphill.
A petite homeless woman with graying hair, Evenstar, 56, said she knew how to keep cool after seven years of living on the streets. She pours water on herself as she walks her route collecting cans. She spends afternoons at her church. And she knows the patches of shade where she can rest and security guards won’t chase her away.
“I just keep going,” Evenstar said. “What can you do?”
Friday was forecast to be the peak of the heat wave, but triple-digit temperatures were expected to linger through the weekend, according to the weather service. Coastal areas also are expected to see temperatures in the high 80s and low 90s.
On the waterfront, temperatures soared to record-breaking heights Friday, climbing to 85 degrees in Newport Beach by the afternoon.
Thousands of beachgoers who sought relief wading in 65-degree ocean water were met with more accommodating conditions than earlier in the week. Sizable surf from Hurricane Fabio that had pounded south-facing beaches with 6- to 8-foot waves in Huntington Beach, Newport Beach and Laguna Beach beginning Wednesday had tapered off by Thursday night, lifeguards said.
Los Angeles has a network of cooling centers for people who lack access to air conditioning and need a place to escape dangerous, higher-than-normal temperatures. Facilities in the Department of Recreation and Parks — such as recreation centers, museums and senior centers — as well as libraries are available as cooling centers during regular hours, city officials said.
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power also said it would install temporary water fountains in the Tujunga Wash area, San Julian Park, Gladys Park, La Plaza De Culturas y Artes and the Exposition Park area.