US braces for second day of scorching weekend temperatures

People across much of the US have been urged to stay hydrated, watch out for the sick and elderly, stay inside as much as possib
People across much of the US have been urged to stay hydrated, watch out for the sick and elderly, stay inside as much as possible and not leave children or animals in cars

Americans braced for a second—and equally scorching—day of dangerously hot weather Sunday, with daytime temperatures forecast to approach 100 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius) across a number of major US cities.

An oppressive heat wave stretching from the Midwestern plains to the Atlantic coast had nearly 150 million people struggling to stay cool amid stifling temperatures Saturday.

"The temperatures we're seeing in our city today and tomorrow could be the highest we've seen in years. Take it seriously," New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Twitter.

The heat was expected to continue through late Sunday as a high-pressure system off the Atlantic coast ushered in steamy, subtropical air.

"Dangerously hot conditions will continue through Sunday," the National Weather Service (NWS) warned for the Washington and Baltimore area, where forecasters predicted ranging from 95 to 100 degrees for a second day.

"High temperatures and humidity could quickly cause heat stress or heat stroke if precautions are not taken," the NWS added.

People were urged to stay hydrated, watch out for the sick and elderly, stay inside as much as possible and not leave children or animals in cars.

The heat wave already claimed at least three lives, including two earlier in the week in the eastern state of Maryland.

Heatwave in the US and Canada
Heatwave in the US and Canada

In Arkansas, 32-year-old former NFL player Mitch Petrus died of heatstroke Thursday after working outside his family's shop.

Heat warnings have also been issued for parts of eastern Canada. In New York, de Blasio declared a heat emergency.

The New York City Triathlon, which had been scheduled for Sunday, was cancelled for the first time since its founding in 2001. Meanwhile the two-day OZY Fest—a food, comedy and music festival set for Central Park—was also called off.

In Washington, a popular weekly outdoor summer jazz concert at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden was cancelled.

Nearly 150 million people across the US are facing hazardous temperatures in a heat wave stretching from the Midwestern plains t
Nearly 150 million people across the US are facing hazardous temperatures in a heat wave stretching from the Midwestern plains to the Atlantic coast

Triple digits

New York City opened 500 cooling centers for residents.

At least three public defenders said on Twitter that inmates in New York's notorious Rikers Island jail complex were suffering with no air conditioning, and that some guards had turned off fans as punishment, resulting in "deadly conditions."

The Brooklyn Defender Services legal aid group said some inmates didn't have summer clothing, only long underwear provided by the group last winter.

Top officials from the city's Department of Corrections were at the facility monitoring the response to the heat wave to "protect health and safety of everyone in the facility," de Blasio wrote on Twitter.

A Philadelphia man, R.J. Rahman, wore a wet rag on his head in an effort to fend off the dangerously oppressive heat
A Philadelphia man, R.J. Rahman, wore a wet rag on his head in an effort to fend off the dangerously oppressive heat

The department said in a statement to AFP that extra staff were on hand to distribute summer clothing, and clinics were open around the clock to treat heat-related symptoms.

Those in units without were given access to fans, ice, water and "multiple cool showers."

The city's electrical grid was so far handling the extra demand, which came just a week after a major outage, blamed on mechanical problems, left tens of thousands of Manhattan residents in the dark.

Triple-digit temperatures in the US northeast are unusual.

The Philadelphia Inquirer suggested, tongue in cheek, that locals might want to seek relief in normally sweltering Miami or Phoenix, which would be up to 25 degrees cooler. Forecasters said temperatures in the city would potentially reach 100 degrees Fahrenheit Sunday.

A street hawker wears an umbrella hat to fend off sweltering heat in Washington amid an oppressive heat wave
A street hawker wears an umbrella hat to fend off sweltering heat in Washington amid an oppressive heat wave

In Boston, where the weather service said that Saturday and Sunday would be "major scorchers," city officials scrapped entry fees at public pools.

Earlier in the week, the National Weather Service office in the Midwestern city of Omaha baked a tray of biscuits—savory breakfast bread similar to scones—on the dashboard of a parked car. After nearly eight hours and with temperatures on the pan reaching 185 degrees, the pastries were almost fully cooked.

Climate data showed June was the hottest month on record worldwide, with a wave across Europe smashing national records.


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US bracing for extreme heat as weekend temperatures soar

© 2019 AFP

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Jul 21, 2019

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Jul 21, 2019
In Chicago SW burbs on Sunday at 1:45 CDT it is 73 and light rain...

Jul 21, 2019
Maybe 600 people die because of heat each year in the U.S. Winter kills over 100,000.

Jul 22, 2019
But, nah...can't be climate change, right?

What may not be cannot be.

Jul 22, 2019
Maybe 600 people die because of heat each year in the U.S. Winter kills over 100,000.
dumb reply, dumpty here as usual did not take into consideration that the temperature does not stop rising.

Jul 23, 2019
Maybe 600 people die because of heat each year in the U.S. Winter kills over 100,000.
dumb reply, dumpty here as usual did not take into consideration that the temperature does not stop rising.
More importantly, winter lasts a lot longer than a couple days, and so you have to multiply that 600 by (conservatively) as many days of winter as there are, divided by the two days of this heat wave. If summer were as hot as this ***all summer***, how many would die?

I also suspect that 100,000 is a world figure, but 600 is in the US alone; certainly 100,000 people in the US don't die of the cold every winter. This is therefore obfuscation by comparing apples and oranges. And that's assuming this statistic is accurate. I'd like to see a source.

Jul 23, 2019
BTW, deaths due to heat in Europe during the 2003 heatwave were estimated at 30,000-70,000. So I kinda doubt that "600."

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