On Sunday, a horrendous traffic 10-car fatal pileup on Interstate 17 revealed just how awful Sedona’s roads are.

Due to cleanup operations and the investigation into the single fatality, Arizona Department of Public Safety troopers completely closed southbound I-17 for five hours and partially closed it for another five.

The mass murder of 49 people at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla., has reignited the debate on guns in the United States.

Gun violence in mass shootings is rare. The Pulse massacre, the 14 dead in the December San Bernadino attacks, and the murder of 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012 are heart-wrenching tragedies, but just a sliver of gun deaths nationwide. In 2015, 12,942 people were victims of gun homicide, unintentional shooting, domestic violence shootings and murder-suicides.

Early Sunday morning, we witnessed the deadliest mass shooting in American history at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla.

The American-born shooter, Omar Mateen, killed 49 people and injured at least 53 in a three-hour hostage standoff before being killed by local police, who burst through a bathroom wall of the iconic nightspot and shot him dead.

The National Weather Service warned of excessive heat for areas below 4,000 feet throughout Northern Arizona over the weekend. Flagstaff, Cottonwood, Page and Winslow all set records this weekend.

Of course, given the amount of smoke in the air in Sedona and the Verde Valley due to nearby wildfires, “outside” was uncomfortable for all sorts of reasons.

This morning as I woke up in downtown Mexico City, I mean Beijing, I mean Los Angeles circa 1986 — it was hard to tell I still lived in Sedona considering I couldn’t see a single rock formation from any direction.

As I made the short drive from my house in West Sedona to the newsroom, I passed many of my neighbors on their morning walks. I wanted to shout that the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality has warned people not to go outside, but of course my windows were rolled up because I didn’t want to breathe the air. The kicker was seeing an out-of-state couple behind me at a stoplight wearing white facemasks.

Editorial cartoonist Rob Pudim provides us several cartoons each week, but the one in this edition is not new. It was actually first published Nov. 5, 1997 — 18 years ago, but it remains as relevant as ever.

1997 TrafficWe all know Sedona’s traffic is awful and it’s only been getting worse. There is a host of causes for the uptick: More tourists who visit, more residents who commute, lack of alternative transportation, narrow streets and a limited number of connecting routes.

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Sedona Gas Prices

Lowest Gas Prices in Sedona
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Sedona United States Sunny, 57 °F
Current Conditions
Sunrise: 7:27 am   |   Sunset: 5:17 pm
8%     7.0 mph     28.683 bar
Fri Low: 28 °F High: 57 °F
Sat Low: 28 °F High: 50 °F
Sun Low: 29 °F High: 49 °F
Mon Low: 22 °F High: 52 °F
Tue Low: 18 °F High: 52 °F
Wed Low: 28 °F High: 54 °F
Thu Low: 25 °F High: 47 °F
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Sun Low: 23 °F High: 46 °F