Cal-ISO control center
The California Independent System Operator’s control center in Folsom. Courtesy of the agency

As Southern California enters a ninth straight day of record-setting heat Thursday, California’s grid operator is hoping to continue its streak of avoiding rolling blackouts by extending the Flex Alert hours.

The California Independent System Operator is asking all residents to conserve electricity during the hours of 3 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Thursday, extending the previous alert periods by two hours.

The agency also reissued an Energy Emergency Alert 2 to secure all available power resources. Demand for electricity in California hit an all-time high on Tuesday while prices for Tuesday and Wednesday hit two-year highs before dropping for Thursday.

The National Weather Service office in San Diego forecast highs on Thursday in the upper 80s near the coast, the mid 90s inland, the upper 90s in the valleys, the upper 80s in the mountains and 100 to 105 in the deserts

Southern California has seen temperatures soar above 100 degrees every day since Wednesday of last week, with little relief in sight until this weekend.

“The prolonged heat wave will finally break this weekend as weakening tropical cyclone Kay stalls offshore,” according to the weather service. “Kay will bring showers and a chance of showers and thunderstorms late Friday into Saturday. Temperatures will remain near or slightly below normal next week.”

City News Service and Reuters contributed to this article.


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Ellen Bullock