The Northeast and surrounding states are bracing for what meteorologists are calling a “potentially deadly” heatwave, per The Daily Mail. With more than 100 local heat records expected to be exceeded on Saturday, millions are bracing for what will be a hot summer weekend.
Several cities, including New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and Chicago have declared heat emergencies, affecting around 200 million Americans. New York also cancelled the New York City Triathlon, scheduled for this Sunday, due to the heat.
Predictions estimate that temperatures can be as high as 110 degrees in Washington, D.C. In cities further north, such as Boston and New York, there seems to be little respite as meteorologists are currently warning of temperatures reaching 107 degrees for both cities. Temperatures are set to begin at 95 degrees on Friday and increase throughout the weekend.
The wave is coming from the Midwest, where cities such as Des Moines and Kansas City are expecting temperatures of 109 degrees, and Chicago and Detroit with similar highs of 108 degrees. The center of the country has been bearing the brunt of the wave, with many people suffering in the high heat since Wednesday.
— CNN Breaking News (@cnnbrk) July 19, 2019
According to Michael Wysession, a professor of Earth and Planetary Sciences at Washington University, the number of days with record highs only keeps increasing.
“What we’re currently seeing is that there are twice as many record highs on any given day than there are record lows. And this is really significant, so we will continue to see record-breaking temperatures as we go on into the future,” he said, per CBS News.
This is particularly bad news, as extreme heat can lead to serious health consequences.
“The combination of heat and humidity can take its toll on someone who is outside and overdoing it,” said Richard Bann, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service Weather Prediction Center, per The New York Times.
“It can be life-threatening.”
Last year, extreme heat sadly did prove to be life-threatening and claimed the lives of 108 people. In comparison, just 30 died from the cold, according to statistics on weather-related fatalities released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (via The New York Times).
To stay safe, the National Weather Service has a number of recommendations to help survive the heat. The first is to stay hydrated and drink plenty of fluids. The second is to stay in an air-conditioned room, even if that means going to a public space to find some cool air. Many cities, such as New York and Detroit, are offering “cooling stations” to those without AC. The third is to stay out of the sun. Lastly, they also advise people to check on relatives and neighbors. The elderly are particularly susceptible to illness in extreme heat.