Emergency Heat Alert
On Tuesday the Santa Clara County Office of Emergency Services issues and alert warning people about the heat. About half a million residents received and automated emergency heat alert advising residents to stay inside, stay hydrated and stay calm since there were widespread power outages. It was the first time ever an automated emergency call went out to all of Santa Clara County.
To make matters worse, 9,500 people lost power during the hottest part of the day. PG&E crews worked non-stop to fix the problems, which they blamed on too many people cranking up their air conditioners.
East Bay Heat
Tuesday in the East Bay, the iconic thermometer in Walnut Creek kept rising. Since temperatures were slightly lower than Monday, people in other parts of Contra Costa County joked about a so-called cold snap.
"It at least felt warmer yesterday," said Jennifer Pickard.
Pickard spent three hours on a Concord corner and lost about five pounds advertising the virtues of a nearby lunch buffet.
She was not alone. Construction workers and fireworks dealers tried to beat the heat.
"We use these little scarves we put around our neck," said Martha Pittore of Phantom Fireworks.
South Bay cools off
The South Bay is dealing with some of the hottest temperatures around which is why the city of San Jose is offering some refuge for neighbors who are sweltering in the heat.
Ten community centers in San Jose, including Mayfair Community Center, are staying open extended hours so people without air conditioning have a place to escape the high temperatures.
The heat was too much for one new father. He picked up three box fans to cool off.
"It's just too hot. It's, it's way too hot. We've got a brand new baby and we've got to keep the place cool," said Casey Linstrum of San Jose.
Joanna Bradley complained fans were only blowing hot air, but finding a room air conditioner wasn't easy.
"They were completely sold out unless we drove to Tracy, so I definitely didn't want to drive to Tracy. So I decided to stop by here. They just got a shipment. So got lucky I guess," she said.
Even some central air units can't stand the heat. Sometimes they break down during a heat wave.
"I started looking and everybody's booked because everyone else had the same issues," said Bert Hashemi of Fremont.
Technician Corrina Rownd found a faulty capacitor to be the issue. A common problem she said. Everyone wants immediate service and demand for appointments has repair people hopping from job to job late into the night.
"Some of the guys aren't getting home until around midnight right now," said Rownd.
City-owned pools are providing relief for San Jose children and community centers are serving as cooling centers for people needing a break. The pool at Mayfair Community Center is open until 8:30 p.m. so kids can cool off when the heat at home is stifling.
"They get cranky a whole lot and so we come out here to the pool every morning before the sun sets in like around 2:00 p.m. or 3:00 p.m. when it gets really hot," said Vaimoana Taimani of San Jose.
Some children take advantage of swim lessons while others just splash in the refreshing water.
The 10 San Jose cooling centers will be open Wednesday from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.