Wild weather: Thunderstorms, hail and record heat bake SoCal over Labor Day weekend

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Monday, September 5, 2022
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Southern California saw record-high temperatures Sunday along with hail, wind and heavy rain.

SANTA CLARITA, Calif. (KABC) -- It was a day of weather extremes in Southern California, from record heat to hail to windy thunderstorms.

In the middle of a prolonged heat wave that set at least one new temperature record, Southern Californians were shocked to see the skies open up, rumble and flash Sunday.

"It kinda just came out of nowhere," said Milo Wakefield, a Cal Arts student who was doing some back-to-school shopping when it suddenly started pouring.

First Wakefield heard thunder and saw the lightning, and then wind-driven rain began falling sideways.

"We were like wow, what is that? We thought we were in California," Wakefield said.

In Santa Clarita, one resident captured dramatic video of the wind and rain whipping around her backyard, knocking furniture into the pool even as the temperature hit 104 degrees.

LATEST FORECAST: Prolonged heat wave expected to continue through Wednesday

And in Long Beach, a record was set for temperature, hitting 109 degrees. The National Weather Service said the previous record for the date was 107, set in 1988.

"It's so insanely hot. It's crazy," said Amber Fortier of Long Beach who was staying in the shade while on a picnic in a park. "I've never seen Long Beach this hot before."

Temperature records for the date were also set or tied in Burbank (110 degrees), Oxnard (101) and Camarillo (106).

While Sunday was expected to potentially be the hottest day of this heat wave, the high temperatures are now expected to last longer than the earlier forecasts predicted.

An excessive heat warning is now in place through Wednesday night.

And the operators of California's power grid have issued a Flex Alert for Monday, asking people to save power during the afternoon and evening hours, when usage is highest and outages may be possible.