Las Vegas ties record high of 117 degrees

Las Vegas ties record high of 117 degrees”

"It looks like (Tuesday) is the peak of the heat wave", Hernandez says.

Meteorologists have issued an excessive heat warning for Phoenix and other parts of Arizona until Sunday evening.

In the wake of a record 122 degree high in the Valley 27 years ago, on June 26, 1990, flights were grounded because of the heat.

Phoenix and Las Vegas are used to 110-degree heat, but temperatures above 115 are rare.

An intense heat wave is engulfing the southwest USA this week, with temperatures so hot commercial airlines have had to cancel flights. That's because the air's density is so altered that smaller planes need a longer runway to take off. Hotter air is thinner air, which makes it more hard - and sometimes impossible - for planes to generate enough lift.

The extreme heat in the Phoenix area, expected to reach 120 degrees on Tuesday, endangers the elderly and others with health risks and has lead to dozens of cancelled flights. Roughly 40 flights in and out of Phoenix Sky Harbor airport were canceled Tuesday, according to the airport.

The canceled itinerary is impacting flights scheduled to arrive at or depart from PHX June 19-21, between 3 pm and 6 pm.

American Airlines contracts regional flights under the American Eagle name to Mesa Airlines and SkyWest, which fly the Bombardier CRJ planes to and from Phoenix.

In temperatures this high, asphalt can reach 140 or 160 degrees, says Paul Iniguez of the National Weather Service in Phoenix.

Though they may not set new records, temperatures are going to stay dangerously hot through the weekend.

Forecasters also warned Phoenix could hit 120 degrees this week. On Wednesday, Tucson could break a new daily record, which now stands at 112 degrees.

A California man has died after taking part in a 5K run in searing heat.

Heat waves reflect an alarming and deadly trend in global warming.

Former Director General of Civil Aviation Kanu Gohain said temperature is a very important parameter to consider while calculating the take-off weight of an aircraft.

The heat has caused several power outages in the state and power officials predict more in the coming days. The buildup of warmth creates a large-scale trough of low pressure that extends from Mexico to Arizona, Southern California and Nevada. Perhaps it's counterintuitive, but in the Eastern United States - where summer humidity can be oppressive - the presence of moisture in the air keeps the temperature down. "Maybe go swimming. Maybe do something indoors instead". A study published Monday in Nature Climate Change found that about 30 percent of the world's population is exposed to heat waves for 20 days in a year.

"If you can avoid being outside in general, that's the best thing you could do today", Fernandez said.

A work crew building the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway in Phoenix takes a break to keep hydrated as temperatures climbed to near 120 degrees on Tuesday.

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