Dangerous Heat Wave Forecast for Southwest and Plains This Weekend

A construction worker is shown atop a roof at sunrise to beat daytime high temperatures, Thursday, June 27, 2013 in Queen Creek, Ariz. Excessive heat warnings will continue for much of the Desert Southwest as building high pressure triggers major warming in eastern California, Nevada, and Arizona. Dangerously hot temperatures are expected across the Arizona deserts throughout the week with a high of 118 by Friday. (PHOTO CREDIT: AP Photo/Matt York)
A construction worker is shown atop a roof at sunrise to beat daytime high temperatures, Thursday, June 27, 2013 in Queen Creek, Ariz. Excessive heat warnings will continue for much of the Desert Southwest as building high pressure triggers major warming in eastern California, Nevada, and Arizona. Dangerously hot temperatures are expected across the Arizona deserts throughout the week with a high of 118 by Friday. (PHOTO CREDIT: AP Photo/Matt York)

Dangerous, potentially record-breaking heat will scorch portions of the Southwest and Plains through the weekend.

Temperatures will climb well past 100 degrees in parts of California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Kansas, Texas, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Arizona, AccuWeather forecasts.

The worst of the heat will hit Saturday into Monday in Arizona and southeastern California, with highs of 115 to 120 degrees predicted. The National Weather Service called it a “major, potentially historic heat wave.”

The temperature in Phoenix on Sunday and Monday could approach the city’s all-time record high of 122 degrees set on June 26, 1990.

James Sawtelle, a weather service meteorologist, said a high-pressure system will begin developing above Phoenix early Saturday, forcing hot air into the region. He said the weather conditions are normal for this time of year, but the temperatures are not.

“The dry weather is normal,” Sawtelle said. “This kind of heat wave is significantly above normal.”

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SOURCE: USA Today, Doyle Rice