Bay Area temperatures soar toward triple digits

A girl enjoys the cool water from the fountain at the Almaden Library Community Center in San Jose, Calif.

It was a blazing day as temperatures soared toward triple digits in some areas on Sunday. It forced people across the Bay Area to find ways to keep cool.

A group of pug owners in Walnut Creek headed right for the nearest shade after their usual Sunday meeting got a little overheated.

"We have lots of water," said dog owner Will Howard. "I like to drop their feet in, it cools them off the fastest."

Karen Franklin drove her dogs out of the Central Valley to escape the blazing heat there.

"107 at 5 p.m.," she said. "It's still hot here, but better."

But not when it comes to fire danger. Everywhere you look, tall grass is baked to tinder dry perfection.

Firefighters in Fremont put out a small grass fire on Stenhammer Drive on Sunday.

Crews in Contra Costa County are on high alert. They warn the public to be careful.

"When someone uses a weed eater, all it takes is a metal blade to spark on a rock," said Mike Jarske with CAL-FIRE. "Amazing how quickly it can take off."

That's what happened near Pleasanton on Saturday. A one acre fire was started by a man mowing some tall grass. He was cited by police.

As temperatures continue to soar, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District is calling a second consecutive Spare the Air Day for the region on Monday.

The alert was issued as air district officials predict a high level of air pollution and smog throughout the Bay Area.

They expect temperatures on Monday to range from the high 70s in coastal areas to up to 103 degrees.

Air district officials say the best way to cut the smog is by driving less.

"To avoid unhealthy air quality and congestion on Bay Area roads, it's crucial that commuters find a better way to work than driving alone," air district Executive Officer Jack Broadbent said.

Broadbent encouraged commuters to do their part by taking advantage of the Bay Area Commuter Benefits Program, which requires employers with at least 50 fulltime workers to offer commute benefits to their employees.

The air district calls Spare the Air Days when ozone pollution is expected to reach unhealthy levels, triggering asthma and causing throat irritation, chest pain, congestion and worsening bronchitis and emphysema.

(ABC7 News reporter Cornell Barnard and Bay City News contributed to this report)
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