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Excessive heat watch for western Pima County on Sunday, Monday

Parts of Southern Arizona could see "dangerously hot" temperatures as high as 111 degrees Sunday and Monday, particularly on the Tohono O'odham Nation and the western deserts.

An excessive heat watch will be in effect from Sunday morning through Monday evening, with highs above the century mark possible, for an area including western Pima County and the Tohono O'odham Nation, including Sells and Ajo, as well as much of Pinal County, the Phoenix metro area, and Arizona's western deserts stretching to Yuma and beyond to the California desert, National Weather Service officials said.

"As the monsoon sputters, the heat will take over this weekend," officials said.

High temperatures will range from 105 to 11 degrees, and the "extreme heat and humidity will significantly increase the potential for heat-related illnesses," forecasters cautioned. People working outside, and those taking part in outdoor activities, will be particularly at risk.

While the watch doesn't cover the Tucson metro area, temperatures across Southern Arizona will be hotter than normal, with near-record highs possible.

"Most areas will see max temps 5-8 degrees above normal, but with limited moisture, overnight relief will keep the heat risk manageable for areas to the east" of the warning area, NWS said.

Even so, "everyone should take precautions this weekend if you are planning on being outside during the day," officials said.

Temperatures in Phoenix could hit 110, while thermometers in Yuma could read 115 degrees on Sunday and Monday.

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"Extreme heat will significantly increase the potential for heat-related illnesses, particularly for those working or participating in outdoor activities," officials said. "Keep in mind you may need to adjust your plans based on the latest health and safety guidelines from CDC and your local officials. Cooling shelters may need to take your temperature or ask questions about how you are feeling."

From the Weather Service:

An Excessive Heat Watch means that a period of very hot temperatures, even by local standards, will occur. Actions should be taken to lessen the impact of the extreme heat.

Stay indoors and seek air-conditioned buildings. Drink water, more than usual, and avoid dehydrating alcoholic, sugary, or caffeinated drinks. Dress for the heat — lightweight and light-colored clothing. Eat small meals and eat more often. Monitor those with a higher vulnerability to heat, including small children. Check in on family, friends, and neighbors, especially the elderly. If engaging in outdoor activity, take longer and more frequent breaks and avoid the hottest parts of the day. Never leave kids or pets unattended in cars.

Public cooling shelters are available in some areas. Consult county officials for more details, which may include guidance for proper social distancing measures.

Recognize the signs and symptoms of heat-related illness. Early signs include thirst and muscle cramps. Heat exhaustion may include: cool, moist, pale skin; headache; dizziness; weakness or exhaustion; nausea. The most serious illness is heat stroke, which may include: vomiting; confusion; throbbing headache; decreased alertness or loss of consciousness; high body temperature (above 105F); hot, dry skin; rapid, weak pulse; rapid, shallow breathing; seizures. Heat stroke can be DEADLY. Treat as an emergency and call 911.

Researchers at San Francisco State University conducted a study in 2003 that showed that the temperature inside a vehicle can rise to 114 degrees on a 95-degree day, and will rapidly rise to 140 degrees in under an hour even with the windows open.

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