Aug 15, 2022 - News

More record-breaking heat could be on the way in Seattle

Illustration of a weather thermometer on fire with a scorched top where the mercury has exploded.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Brace yourself for what could be another week of record-breaking temps.

What's happening: A ridge of high pressure likely to persist over the Pacific Northwest for the next two weeks has meteorologists expecting rising heat this week.

What they're saying: "We'll probably be above 90, maybe mid-90s, for Wednesday, Thursday and Friday," National Weather Service meteorologist Mike McFarland told Axios.

Why it matters: Seattle is on track this year to break the record for most 90-degree days, set in 2015 when there were 12 days of 90-degree heat. So far there've been 10 in 2022.

  • "There's still half of August left, so why not? I think that's a pretty easy (record) to fall," McFarland said.

The intrigue: Multiple 90-degree days are becoming more common each year.

  • Since 2015, six different years have recorded at least seven days with 90+-degree heat, per the NWS.
  • That's compared to just four years that recorded the same from 1950 to 2014.

Background: A deadly heatwave in Seattle last month set a city record with six straight days of 90-degree heat.

  • Health officials attributed at least three deaths to the heat and said another three people drowned during the hot stretch.
  • The potential for serious health problems soars during heat waves — with elevated risks for heart attacks, strokes and kidney failure — especially in a city like Seattle where most homes don't have air conditioning.

Of note: The city of Seattle and King County have offered safety tips for hot days and opened cooling centers throughout summer.

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