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Heat records fried Sunday

Cloverdale 110, previous record 107 (1993)

Ukiah, 108, previous 96 (2007)

Clearlake 106, previous 101 (1982)

Santa Rosa 106, previous 102 (1917)*

Healdsburg 110, previous 106 (1917)*

Petaluma 102, previous 99 (1962)

*Communities whose measuring location may have changed between the old and new record.

Other highs Sunday included:

Sebastopol 105

Sonoma 108

Windsor 110

Rohnert Park 109

Bodega Bay 67

—Source: National Weather Service


Blistering heat baked the North Coast Sunday afternoon, shattering temperature records across the county for a second day and forcing residents indoors to avoid the scorching sun or fleeing to seek relief at local pools, rivers and beaches.

In what was the hottest day of the recent heat wave, the mercury peaked at 110 in Cloverdale, 106 in Santa Rosa and 99 in Petaluma, all records going back as much as a century, according to the U.S. Weather Service.

Slightly lower temperatures in the low 90s in Santa Rosa were forecast for Monday, but the heat is going to hang around through the rest of the week.

“There will be some relief, but I don’t think it’s anything substantial for you, unfortunately,” said Alyson Hoegg, a meteorologist from AccuWeather.

The soaring temperatures spurred Andrew Leonard to head out early Sunday looking to purchase an air conditioner for his Chanate Road-area home, to no avail. Trips to several area big box retailers found them sold out, he said.

“This is definitely hotter weather than we’re used to,” said Leonard, who works as a community engagement officer for Sonoma County. “To have this many consecutive days of consistent heat is definitely difficult.”

On his way back from his fruitless errand, Leonard said he drove past the unusual sight of a sidewalk buckled upward by the heat. The combination of thin concrete and ineffective joints meant that when the material expanded, the sections of sidewalk pushed against one another and raised several inches off the ground, he said.

“I thought ‘This is amazing. This is crazy,’” he said.

Leonard said his wife eventually picked up a small air conditioner on her way back from San Francisco, but for real relief the pair planned to head down to their association’s pool.

Plenty of others did exactly the same things.

The city’s popular Ridgway Aquatic Center was at its 381-person capacity for most of the day, while Finley Aquatic Center also saw crowds close to its 400 capacity, said Adriane Mertens, marketing and outreach coordinator for the parks department.

The city set up a cooling station Sunday at Finley from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. that provided water. It also encouraged people to find cool places to go such as malls, movie theaters and parks with grassy shaded areas.

Watching a movie in a cool, air-conditioned theater was the perfect antidote to the heat wave for many others on Sunday.

“This is the place to be,” said Peggy Gable of Windsor who was walking in to see the film “Megan Leavey.” “It’s too hot to be anywhere else.”

John Cole and his wife Martha of Santa Rosa said they wouldn’t usually go to a movie on a Sunday, except to escape the heat.

“It’s this or the mall,” he said. “This is more comfortable.”

The heat apparently took a toll on the number of entrants to the “Show & Shine” car show at Juilliard Park.

Organizer John Bly said about 80 of the classic cars scheduled to enter did not show up.

“It’s probably due to the weather,” he said. Some car owners “actually said the heat affects their paint job,” he said.

Heat records fried Sunday

Cloverdale 110, previous record 107 (1993)

Ukiah, 108, previous 96 (2007)

Clearlake 106, previous 101 (1982)

Santa Rosa 106, previous 102 (1917)*

Healdsburg 110, previous 106 (1917)*

Petaluma 102, previous 99 (1962)

*Communities whose measuring location may have changed between the old and new record.

Other highs Sunday included:

Sebastopol 105

Sonoma 108

Windsor 110

Rohnert Park 109

Bodega Bay 67

—Source: National Weather Service

While the grass and shade provided some respite from the heat at the show, Bly noted that the biggest lines were for shaved ice and ice cream.

The National Weather Service has a heat advisory in effect through 9 p.m. Thursday.

Officials stressed the need to remain hydrated, and to take extra steps to ensure that the elderly, children and pets are safe.

Temperatures are expected to remain in the high 80s to mid-90s through Friday. But a cooling trend hits the North Coast next weekend bringing high temperatures down to the low 80s and upper 70s.

The 106 degree record set Sunday in Santa Rosa topped a previous record of 102 that stood since 1917, though the location where the current readings are taken has moved to Charles M. Schulz-Sonoma County Airport.

The Cloverdale record of 110 degrees beat the previous high of 107 set in 1993.

Even Petaluma’s paltry 102 was a record breaker, scorching the previous record of 99 degrees set in 1962.

Across the Bay Area, more than 43,000 people remained without power at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, including 811 in Sonoma County, said Pacific Gas and Electric Co. spokeswoman Jacqueline Ratto. There were 479 without power in Windsor, 166 in Rohnert Park and 158 in Santa Rosa, as well as a few smaller outages around the county.

There were also several fires Sunday afternoon, some of which appeared related to the heat.

A small fire west of Petaluma followed a report of a PG&E transformer explosion, according to dispatchers.

A garage fire in Cloverdale appeared to be sparked by used rags spontaneously combusting, a process that is more likely in high temperatures, said Chief Roger Fletcher.

A small fence also caught fire in Petaluma for unknown reasons. And the cause of the fatal fire at a Santa Rosa mobile home park was still under investigation.

Staff Writer Clark Mason contributed to this report.

You can reach Staff Writer Kevin McCallum at 707-521-5207 or kevin.mccallum@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter @srcitybeat.