Extreme heat over the weekend choked several states from the Desert Southwest to northern California and the Four Corners region.

These were just a few of the daily record highs that were tied or broken over the weekend:

• Needles, California: 122
• Palm Springs, California: 120
• Las Vegas: 117
• Fresno, California: 114
• Downtown Sacramento, California: 113

Records could be tied or broken again Monday and Tuesday in many parts of Nevada and California, with records also possible in portions of Utah, northwestern Arizona, eastern Oregon and southern Idaho. This includes major metropolitan areas such as Las Vegas; Reno, Nevada; Salt Lake City; Boise, Idaho; Sacramento; and Medford, Oregon. Triple digits are also likely in eastern Washington, including Spokane. The National Weather Service still has excessive heat warnings and heat advisories in all of these places.

Even for mid-July, high temperatures will be much hotter than average, ranging from 10 to 20 degrees above normal in some spots. To stay cool, drivers should drink plenty of water and keep extra bottled water in their trucks. Covering their drivers’ seats with a light-colored blanket when they’re taking breaks also helps, in addition to driving at night as much as possible.

The heat wave will hit regions that are plagued by devastating drought and prone to wildfires. To prevent new fires from sparking, drivers should avoid dragging chains and parking in grassy areas. Also, wildfire smoke may interfere with drivers in some areas, potentially leading to road closures. Unfortunately, a retired fire chief and a U.S. Forest Service pilot died over the weekend after their plane crashed while fighting the Cedar Basin Fire near in western Arizona.

Impact on freight

The latest FreightWaves SONAR data shows a very high Reefer Outbound Tender Volume Index (ROTVI) for the Ontario and Fresno, California, freight markets. This is indicated by its dark blue shading in the map below. Reefers are trailers used to haul produce, certain liquids and chemicals, as well as other temperature-sensitive freight.

(Map: FreightWaves SONAR Reefer Outbound Tender Volume Index (ROTVI). To learn more about FreightWaves SONAR, click here.)

ROTVI is a moving index that reflects loads of reefer freight being electronically offered by shippers to carriers. With it being so high, this means many drivers may be heading to Ontario and Fresno to pick up loads during the heat wave.

Click here for more FreightWaves articles by Nick Austin.

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