Record-setting heat wave turns fatal in Southwest


Story highlights

NEW: Temperatures in Death Valley hit 128 for a second straight day

Excessive heat warnings from California to Arizona may last through Tuesday

The heat may have contributed to the death of a Las Vegas man

134 was the "highest reliably recorded air temperature on Earth" on July 10, 1913

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Death Valley, California CNN —  

Death Valley resident Mike Wood says he’s used to the heat. But when his running shoes begin to melt, he starts to pay attention.

“The ground temperatures here can approach a hundred degrees so you’re talking about pretty much boiling the shoes … everything that kind of holds the shoe together kind of comes apart,” Wood said.

Wood hit the pavement running despite temperatures that hit 128 (53 degrees C) this weekend in Death Valley.

That was the high reported by the National Weather Service on Sunday afternoon. It recorded the same temperature Saturday, after an initial reported reading of 127, according to meteorologist Dan Berc.

Highs in Las Vegas hit 117 on Sunday. This tied the all-time record for the city, first set in 1942 and tied in 2005, the National Weather Service reported.

The record-setting heat wave is expected to bake the Southwest well into the work week.

Civic and emergency officials throughout the Southwest say if there was ever a time to worry, this would be it. The reason isn’t just the oppressive heat that is plaguing the region: It’s the fact it is expected to hang around, and possibly even get worse, over the next few days.

The heat may have led to the death of an elderly man in Las Vegas. Paramedics found the man dead in his home, which did not have air conditioning, Las Vegas Fire & Rescue spokesman Tim Szymanski said.

He died of cardiac arrest and the heat may have contributed to his death, although t