90 million people under alert for dangerously high temperatures

(CNN) — The deadly heat wave scorching much of the United States will continue this Sunday, when the Northeast and Mid-South regions are likely to be stifled by temperatures reaching 40.5 degrees Celsius.

More than 90 million people across the country are under various heat alerts for dangerously high temperatures. This Sunday is expected to bring the highest temperatures to the Northeast.

“From the Great Plains south to the east, it will feel extremely cramped, especially in the major metropolitan areas from Washington to New York City and Boston,” warned the National Weather Service.

In New York City, at least one person died Saturday from heat exposure, a spokesman for the city medical examiner’s office said. The person also had other medical problems, the spokesman said. The forecast high in the city this Saturday was 36 degrees Celsius.

Other heat-related deaths during this week’s heat wave include a 66-year-old Dallas woman who had underlying health conditions, according to a county official. And on Wednesday, a 22-year-old hiker died from possible dehydration and exposure after running out of water in a South Dakota national park, local officials said.

Cities like Philadelphia, Boston, and Washington are poised to see heat that tops 90 degrees, with conditions intensifying humidity to feel as high as triple digits.

The extreme conditions, which experts say are becoming more common around the world due to climate change, have prompted local officials to issue heat emergencies to allow resources to help deal with the heat that millions of people have been enduring. . Officials are also imploring people to be extra careful when spending time outdoors, stay hydrated, and keep an eye on vulnerable communities and neighbors.

This Sunday, the values ​​​​of the heat index (how the air feels) can exceed 37.7 degrees Celsius in some areas due to stifling humidity, he pointed the Weather Prediction Center.

“Widespread high temperature records are forecast to be tied or broken from the mid-Atlantic to New England (Sunday) with many locations expected to reach the upper 32s and heat indices to exceed 37,” the forecast center wrote.

Metropolitan areas under heat emergency this Sunday as temperatures rise

In Philadelphia, where the maximum temperature is expected to be 37.2 degrees Celsius on Sunday, authorities have extended a heat health emergency. Cooling centers, special team home visits, and enhanced daytime outreach for the homeless are available on the weekend.

“Very hot weather can make people sick, even healthy adults. During this heat wave, be sure to keep an eye on your neighbors and loved ones, especially the elderly.” wrote Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney on social media.

In Washington, where the mayor declared a heat emergency earlier this week, temperatures are expected to hit 100 degrees on Sunday. The emergency will last until at least this Monday morning, which will allow the availability of shelters and cooling centers to attend to those who need them, said Mayor Muriel Bowser.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul urged people in her state to take advantage of cooling centers and keep an eye on particularly vulnerable communities.

“We need everyone to be vigilant this weekend, watching for any signs of heat-related illness and looking out for one another,” Hochul said in a news release.

People use an umbrella to shield themselves from the sun while looking at the Washington Monument in Washington, DC, on Saturday.

Excessive heat is the leading cause of weather-related deaths in the US.

In the United States, excessive heat is the leading cause of weather-related deaths, and the conditions imposed by climate change have made extreme weather events deadlier and more common.

In fact, heat deaths have outnumbered hurricane deaths by more than 15 to 1 over the past decade, according to data tracked by the National Weather Service.

Part of the problem is that the high humidity that makes it feel like over 100 degrees Fahrenheit in many areas also makes it hard for the body to cool down.

“Sweating removes 22% of excess body heat by redirecting heat into sweat evaporation,” CNN meteorologist Robert Shackelford explained. “High humidity means there’s more moisture in the air. Since there’s a lot more moisture in the air, it causes sweat to evaporate more slowly, leading to a decrease in your body’s natural ability to cool itself.

In Arizona’s Maricopa County, 29 heat-related deaths have been confirmed since March, according to the county’s public health department. Last year, there were 16 heat-related deaths during the same period, the health department said. Meanwhile, dozens of other deaths are under investigation in the county from heat-related causes.

New York City sees an average of 10 heat stress deaths each year, according to a report commissioned last year by the city’s health department. The report found that a lack of air conditioning in the home “remains a major risk factor for death from heat stress.”

It is not known if the person who died from heat exposure on Saturday had access to air conditioning.

CNN’s Samantha Beech, Isa Kaufman Geballe, Haley Brink, Allison Chinchar and Rachel Ramirez contributed to this report.

Source link