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Southern California Wilting In Heat Wave

Wed., Aug. 6, 1997

Wilting Southern Californians traipsed to the beaches or stayed indoors Tuesday to escape record, triple-digit temperatures and the region’s first full-fledged heat wave of the summer.

The 100-degree high downtown broke the previous 97-degree record for Aug. 5, set in 1994. Elsewhere, temperatures soared to 108 in El Cajon, 110 in Woodland Hills, 111 in San Bernardino, 117 in Palm Springs and 118 in Thermal.

“It’s ripping hot, but it’s a dry heat!” laughed Billy Neal as he stepped outside his air-conditioned home. “My dog’s tongue is curling up like a dried leaf.”

There was a “voltage dip” when a small plane struck high-voltage transmission lines in the Cajon Pass near Hesperia, authorities said. Three people aboard were killed.

No homes or businesses lost power, but thousands of traffic signals were knocked out in the Los Angeles area. Each of the voltage-sensitive signals has to be reset manually.

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