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Building heat across the West to challenge record highs this week

© iStock - MarianVejcik
Brandon Buckingham, AccuWeather Meteorologist

Above-average temperatures were generally limited to the Desert Southwest last week, but a shift in the jet stream pattern will bring expanding heat across much of the Intermountain West this week.

An upper-level dome of high pressure sat over the southern Plains last week, which resulted in an extended streak of triple-digit heat for many across Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas. This dome is forecast to shift west, along with the above-average temperatures.

Phoenix, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas and Reno, Nevada, are just some of the cities expected to challenge record-high temperatures over the coming week.

Residents in Salt Lake City and Reno will see afternoon high temperatures reach the middle to upper 90s on each afternoon from Tuesday through Friday, while the mercury soars into the upper 100s in Las Vegas and over 110 in Phoenix.

Along with an uptick in the temperatures, humidity levels will increase late this week as monsoon moisture streams into portions of the Desert Southwest. This will act to send Accuweather RealFeel® Temperatures about 5-10 degrees higher than what the thermometer registers, especially late in the week.

As dangerous heat builds across much of the western United States over the coming week, stay alert for the signs of heat-related illnesses.

Avoid strenuous outdoor activities during the hottest times of the day if at all possible. If you must be outdoors, remember to wear light-colored, loose-fitting clothing and take frequent breaks in the shade.

Double-check vehicles before walking away to ensure children or pets have not been left behind.