Firefighters in the Inland Empire on Sunday were preparing for wildfire danger ahead of dangerously hot temperatures expected to set in across Southern California this week.
Fire crews in the region were already busy over the weekend after a brush fire broke out along Highway 18 near the San Bernardino National Forest Saturday night. The blaze, dubbed the Cloud Fire, burned about 20 acres before firefighters gained the upper hand, with 85% containment as of Sunday morning.
Meanwhile, the National Weather Service posted an Excessive Heat Watch encompassing virtually all of Southern California from Tuesday to Friday. The heat watch is in effect from Monday to Friday for Riverside County.
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To prepare ahead of time for wildfires, officials have offered the following tips:
- Clear brush away from your home
- Use fire-resistant landscaping
- Know your evacuation routes
- Have an emergency supply kit
Officials also advise that residents back their car into their driveway if there is a fire in the area to allow for a quicker departure in the event of an evacuation order.
Sign up to receive wildfire alerts in your area at readyforwildfire.org.
With the potential for record-breaking temperatures, the excessive heat warning has also prompted officials to warn that outdoor activity should be curtailed and residents should stay hydrated and, if possible, in a cool place during the day.
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Daily temperatures in the Inland Empire will hover between 100-105 degrees, while the Coachella Valley will reach between 115-120.
Riverside County recently opened cooling centers in multiple locations, where residents who don't have access to air-conditioning can stay during the heat of the day. A complete list of options is available at capriverside.org/cool-centers.
Forecasters said the ridge will loosen its grip by next week, and more seasonable weather will settle over the region.
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