Hotter than hell? Death Valley in California could melt records with hottest temperature recorded on Earth

Credit: AP/National Park Service file

If you thought last week's heatwave was too much, spare a thought for people in Death Valley, California which could have recorded the highest temperature on Earth.

Furnace Creek in Death Valley lived up to its name on Sunday when the mercury hit 130F (54.4C) at 3.41pm which could be the highest ever officially recorded temperature on Earth.

The recording, which is being verified by the US National Weather Service, comes amid a heatwave on the US west coast which could see temperatures rise further this week.

It equates to half the heat needed to boil water a kettle and few degrees away from being able to fry an egg on the ground.

Furnace Creek, a community serving as the headquarters of the Death Valley National Park, already holds the record for the world’s highest temperature ever recorded.

On July 10, 1913, a temperature of 134F (56.7C) was recorded but experts have questioned its accuracy.

In July 2013, it last reached 129F (53.8), the National Weather Service (NWS) said, saying that if the temperature is corroborated, it would be the hottest August temperature at the site by three degrees.

The NWS has warned of extreme heat to continue this week with warnings in place for 56 million people.

A rare 'firenado' was spotted in California on Saturday near the Nevada border prompting a tornado warning from the NWS in Reno.

Scorching in the US state has led to two days of blackouts in California, after a power plantmalfunctioned on Saturday.