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Western Washington breaks high temp records amid heat wave

(AP file photo)

Seattle broke a high temperature record Wednesday as thermostats hit 90 degrees.

The Aug. 2 record high for SeaTac Airport was 89 degrees. By 2 p.m. the National Weather Service reported that it measured 90 degrees, setting a new high and it wasn’t the only Washington area to see records fall.

The overall pattern of the heat wave is on track to continue over the next couple of days. The thick haze floating down  from wildfires in British Columbia are expected to reduce the highs through Thursday, but it won’t spare the region from sweltering heat. Like a cloud, the haze can limit the radiation from the sun, KIRO 7 Meteorologist Nick Allard told Seattle’s Morning News. That may reduce temperatures by a few degrees.

The current forecast from Allard calls for a high of 95 on Wednesday, high of 99 on Thursday, and 95 on Friday.

There is an Excessive Heat Warning that lasts through Friday for the Puget Sound region.

Cooling centers are opening across the region today to help people deal with the excessive heat. A list of Seattle cooling centers can be found here.

King County cooling centers

Pierce County cooling centers

Snohomish County cooling centers

Thurston County cooling centers

Skagit County cooling centers

In many places, people are encouraged to take advantage of cooler air in public buildings, such as libraries, community centers, malls, theaters, etc.

The highs on Thursday could come within five degrees of all-time record highs, according to the National Weather Service.

The hottest days in Seattle since the 1980s are:

  • July 29, 2009 — 103 degrees
  • July 16, 1941 and July 20, 1994 — 100 degrees
  • Aug. 9, 1960; Aug. 9, 1981; and July 23, 1991 — 99 degrees

The watch affects Snohomish County south to the Chehalis Valley, west to Bremerton and the Hood Canal, and east to the Cascade foothills.

The National Weather Service warns that the hottest temperatures will be in the Central Puget Sound area and Southwest interior. SeaTac could hit 97 Thursday; Olympia could see temperatures as high as 102 degrees.

Cooler air will move on Friday, but temperatures will remain in the high 80s and low 90s.

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