Firefighters say once the temperature tops 100 degrees, fatigue begins to take its toll, forcing them to take breaks to hydrate and rest. "We have to rotate. It takes twice as many firefighters to do the same job in the same amount of time. It cuts our ratio in half," said Chris Christopherson with Madera County CalFire.
Though two rooms of the house were saved, firefighters say the home was a total loss. "Because of those conditions, that did prevent us from containing the fire as quick as we normally would," said Christopherson.
The extreme heat also affected other workers Monday. Several sign twirlers like Leroy Stewart were seen taking refuge in the shade instead of on sidewalks. "I move with the shade. Every time the shade move, I move," said Stewart.
Competitive swimmers are also subject to challenging conditions because of the heat. Aubrey Pongluelert said lukewarm water can turn a workout into a disaster. "Temperature is really important. And if it's hot than it's really uncomfortable to swim and we get overheated. It just totally messes you up," said Pongluelert.
The Olympic-sized swimming pool at Central East has technology on its side. The pool is outfitted with a giant water fountain which runs all night to keep the pool around 80 degrees. Without it, the extreme heat would have the temperature around 85. "We have two horsepower pumps and it sucks the water up from down low in the water and we shoot it up through the air and it aerates it somewhat, like an evaporative cooler in homes," said Central East Aquatics Director Rick Klatt.