The heat wave is expected to affect King County

The heat wave is expected to affect King County

Temperatures will likely reach 90 degrees Fahrenheit on Sunday, June 26 and Monday, June 27.

After an incredibly dreary spring and early summer, King County will likely experience a heat wave this weekend with temperatures expected to reach 90 degrees on Sunday, June 26.

According to a special weather release from the National Weather Service, the upcoming heat wave will pose a moderate risk of heat-related illness for heat-sensitive people and pets.

This upcoming heat wave will occur on the one-year anniversary of the record-breaking “heat dome” event that hit the Pacific Northwest in 2021 and claimed 38 lives in King County alone .

According to King County, last year’s heat wave was the deadliest climate disaster in the region’s history.

In preparation for more frequent extreme heat waves due to climate change, King County is hosting a virtual information session on June 24. The briefing will feature experts in public health, emergency management and community engagement.

King County and Seattle completed a heat mapping project in 2021 that found Kent and Auburn are disproportionately affected by high temperatures.

The study found that while the heat was dispersed fairly evenly across the county, Kent and Auburn retained the heat longer than other areas. The disproportionate heat retention in Kent and Auburn is partially due to a combination of an abundance of hard surfaces such as pavement, which retain heat, and a lack of natural landscapes and tree canopies.

One afternoon during the heat mapping project, temperatures in Ballard reached a high of 85 degrees Fahrenheit, and just 30 miles away in Kent, temperatures reached 96 degrees Fahrenheit, according to King County.

“Areas of the county that are warmer tend to be areas with more pavement and hard surfaces. Those hard surfaces hold heat and can amplify local temperatures,” said Lara Whitely Binder, director of the climate preparedness program of King County.

The biggest health risk in extreme heat is heatstroke, which if left unattended can be fatal, according to the CDC.

To protect yourself from heat-related illnesses, the Washington State Department of Health recommends drink plenty of water and stay in an air-conditioned room if possible.

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Jennifer Ahdout

Jennifer Ahdout

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