The Pierre swimming pool on East Dakota Avenue was empty much of the afternoon and evening on Sunday, July 9, said employees, as the temperature hit 106 degrees.  (Stephen Lee/Capital Journal)

The Pierre public swimming pool opened again on Sunday after being closed for three days due to mechanical and maintenance problems. 

But few kids showed up to swim, pool employees said.

“It’s almost too hot,” said one employee as the pool remained swimmerless just after evening hours began at 7 p.m., when temperatures still were registering around 100 degrees.

At 4:30 p.m., there was no one at the pool, either

Weekends tend to be slow anyway at the pool and Griffin Park, which surrounds the pool, also didn’t have many people around on Sunday, the pool employee said.

The temperature in Pierre hit a high of 106 degrees at 1 minute before 4 p.m. on Sunday, July 9, according to the National Weather Service. That’s 18 degrees above normal for the date but still 4 degrees below the 1936 record for the date of 110 degrees. The Pierre pool was 11 years old in 1936.

The weather service issued a “red flag warning” for most of West River, South Dakota, including Stanley County and the Cheyenne River and Standing Rock Indian Reservations.

The red flag warning means “that critical fire weather conditions are either occurring now or will shortly,” according to the weather service, which issued the warning at 3:07 p.m., effective until 9 p.m., Sunday

“A combination of strong winds, low relative humidity and warm temperatures can contribute to extreme fire behavior.”

Winds in the 20 mph range with gusts above 30 mph, combined with humidity levels as low as 12 to 17 percent, and temperatures that went over the 100-degree mark and drought conditions cause the fire danger, according to the weather service.

Areas east of the Missouri River in central South Dakota, including Hughes County, were said to be in hazardous weather conditions on Sunday because of the dry, hot weather, according to the weather service.

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