California Heat Wave: Death Valley Hits Third Highest Recorded Temperature on Planet Earth

An automated weather station in Death Valley, California, topped out at 130 degrees Fahrenheit on Sunday afternoon, making it the third highest temperature ever recorded on Earth.

California's Death Valley registered record-breaking temperatures on Sunday afternoon, hitting 130 degrees Fahrenheit (54.4 degrees Celsius), making it one of the highest temperatures ever recorded on planet Earth.

According to data obtained by the National Weather Service, the California national park recorded the temperature at the Furnace Creek weather station at 3:41 p.m. PT on Sunday along with 7 percent humidity and gusts up to 6 miles (9.6km) per hour.

Highest Temperature Since 1913

Death Valley
California's Death Valley. Twitter

"This is an extreme temperature event. The recorded temperature will need to undergo a formal review. A Climate Extremes Committee will be formed to verify the validity of the 130°F reading," the agency said.

The data will be investigated by both the National Center for Environmental Information and the World Meteorological Organization. If confirmed, it would make it the third highest temperature ever recorded on the planet.

Death Valley is no stranger to extreme heat and also is the record holder for Earth's hottest temperature. According to the World Meteorological Organization, the hottest temperature ever recorded was in Furnace Creek, Death Valley, Calif., at 134 degrees Fahrenheit (56.7°C) on July 10, 1913. In July 2013, it reached a temperature of 129 °F (53.8 °C).

The second highest temperature ever recorded on the planet was 131°F (55.0°C) in
Kebili, Tunisia, in July 1931.

Power Outages in California due to Heatwave

California has been in the grip of a nasty heat wave for the past several days, triggering power outages throughout the state as the power grid became overwhelmed by energy demands, as previously reported.

Since Friday, millions of homes across the state have plunged into darkness as the California Independent System Operator (ISO) has called for shut-offs to cope with surging demand for the first time since the 2001 energy crisis.

The California ISO has warned it may not have adequate supplies over the next few days to meet the anticipated crush of demand for electricity to power air conditioners and fans and has asked consumers to conserve energy for the next four days.