Record-breaking heat hits Alaska
All-time maximum temperature records are being broken in parts of Alaska this week.
A slow-moving and unusually strong region of high pressure, combined with a mass of warm air, caused temperatures to reach unprecedented levels in Alaska on Thursday.
Image: ECMWF-HRES model showing hot air over Alaska on Thursday.
The state's most populated city, Anchorage, reached 89 degrees Fahrenheit (~ 32 degrees Celsius) at Ted Stevens International Airport late on Thursday afternoon. This broke Anchorage's previous maximum temperature record of 85°F (~29°C) from June 14, 1969. Data for the airport goes back to 1952.
The Anchorage International Airport has just reached 89 degrees. The all time record high temperature for #Anchorage has officially been broken. The previous record of 85 degrees was set on June 14, 1969 (period of record 1952-2019). #AKwx #RecordHeat— NWS Anchorage (@NWSAnchorage) July 5, 2019
The heat is also contributing to a number of bushfires in Alaska, prompting advisories for dense smoke in some areas.
Record-challenging heat and smoke will persist in Alaska through the weekend and into the start of next week underneath the stubborn high pressure system.