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Its a heat wave emergency
Bad air, power outages feared as high of 109 expected
Anthony Gibbs, left, seeks relief from the heat in the shade while sharing some laughs with friends at Mantecas Library Park. - photo by HIME ROMERO

Government agencies are bracing for the worst.

The National Weather Service is calling for highs in excess of 100 degrees through at least Friday. The NWS expects a high of 109 degrees today, 110 degrees Tuesday, 110 degrees Wednesday, 106 degrees Thursday, 101 degrees Friday. Making it worse is the overnight lows are expected to go no farther down than the mid-70s though at least Wednesday.

The heat event has prompted San Joaquin County to declare a heat emergency. The county is working with local jurisdictions to establish cooling centers and to work with farmers who have livestock such as dairies expected to be adversely impacted by the heat.

The California Independent System Operator, which manages most of the state’s power grid, said a so-called Flex Alert will be in effect today through Tuesday evening in Northern California in a bid to reduce power consumption and avoid the possibility of outrages. High temperatures on work days have sent power reserves dangerously low in past years.

The Flex Alert calls for voluntarily cutbacks on energy use until after 6 p.m. to prevent reserves from falling to emergency levels.

The San Joaquin Valley Air Quality Control District is warning that stagnant air combined with the oppressive heat will significantly reduce air quality for at least the next two days.

Manteca has two cooling centers. The Manteca Senior Center, 295 Cherry Lane, is open today and Tuesday from noon to 8 p.m. for all ages.

In addition The Commons at Union Ranch will offer hydration and senior friendly activities for those 75 and older from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. today through at least Thursday. The Commons is located on North Union Road next to Del Webb at Woodbridge. For information, call 371-7202.

There is also the option of public pools stay cool. The Lincoln Pool on Powers Avenue across from the fire station is open through Aug. 11 for public swimming. The hours are 1 to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, Friday evening from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. as well as Saturday and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.

Children 4 and under are free while youth 14 to 17 are $2, adults, 18 to 61 are $3 and seniors 62 and up are $2.

Lap swimming for all ages takes place Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at Manteca High. No pre-registration is required. You simply pay the $2 per session fee at the entrance to Manteca High swimming pool. A minimum of five swimmers are needed for the session to take place.

The heat wave isn’t expected to break anytime soon.

The National Weather Service’s six-day outlook calls for temperatures to peak above 100 degrees every day. Beyond that Accuweather is calling for temperatures to drop to 96 before climbing back up past the century mark on Monday, July 8.  They are expected to stay in the 101 to 104 degree range until July 17 when the high is predicted to reach only 97 degrees.