With searing heat driving up air-conditioner use across California, the manager of the state’s power grid has called for another Flex Alert today, urging residents to conserve as much electricity as possible from 4 to 9 p.m.

A Flex Alert within those hours was also called on Wednesday—and the power system operator warned that more are likely to be posted in the coming week, particularly on Sunday and Monday, which are forecast to have the highest electricity demand.

During the alerts, residents are urged to take voluntary steps such as setting thermostats to 78 degrees or higher, avoiding use of major appliances, turning off unnecessary lights and avoiding charging electric vehicles.

A Flex Alert is the lowest-level notification issued by the state, but if voluntary conservation fails to cut strain on the power grid, the California Independent System Operator could move into a series of emergency alerts that could ultimately lead to rolling blackouts.

The heat wave baking most of the state is expected to continue through the Labor Day weekend, with temperatures in the 90s forecast for Long Beach.

“We are anticipating this extreme heat to be a length and duration the likes of which we haven’t experienced in some time,” Gov. Gavin Newsom said Wednesday. “Yes, we’re used to record-breaking temperatures, maybe a day or two, more episodic, but this is an extended period.”

Long Beach officials meanwhile issued a heat advisory and said they will close one COVID-19 testing clinic on Monday and open additional cooling centers through the holiday weekend.

All city Parks, Recreation and Marine Community Centers and Long Beach Public Library locations are available as designated cooling centers during their normal business hours.

Additionally, the following cooling centers have been activated on Sunday, Sept. 4, and Monday, Sept. 5 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.:

  • Admiral Kidd Park Community Center, 2125 Santa Fe Ave.
  • Cesar Chavez Park Community Center, 401 Golden Ave.
  • Doris Topsy-Elvord Community Center at Houghton Park, 6301 Myrtle Ave.
  • El Dorado Park West Community Center, 2800 Studebaker Rd.
  • McBride (Cal Rec) Community Center, 1550 Martin Luther King, Jr. Ave.

Face masks will be required at all locations, the city said.

Due to the excessive heat, the city-run COVID-19 testing site at Ramona Park, located at 3301 E. 65th St., will temporarily modify its schedule and not open on Monday, Sept. 5. Normal operations are expected to resume on Tuesday, Sept. 6.

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