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Rsearch Shows Forecasters How They Might Be Able To Predict Heat Waves In California


Heat waves can be deadly and costly.  Capital Public Radio’s Ezra David Romero reports new findings show forecasters may now have a better understanding of when heat waves could hit California.

Within two weeks after heavy rains over the Indian Ocean California often goes through a heat wave. As the climate warms those heat waves could worsen, says UC Davis' Richard Grotjahn who analyzed 24 heat waves in the state since 1979.

He says a 10-day heat wave caused over a billion dollars in damage to the dairy industry in 2006 and caused around 600-heat related deaths.

"I think it was like 1,000 PG&E transformers blew out just because of the load of electricity running through the lines. People running air conditioners was a big power demand."

By being able to predict the window when heat waves could impact California Grotjahn says the state could take preventative measures to avoid damage or deaths.

In Sacramento, I’m Ezra David Romero.

Ezra David Romero is an award-winning radio reporter and producer. His stories have run on Morning Edition, Morning Edition Saturday, Morning Edition Sunday, All Things Considered, Here & Now, The Salt, Latino USA, KQED, KALW, Harvest Public Radio, etc.
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