Those Steamy Summer Days
August 09, 2001
Man it's hot! You've probably heard some form of this expression at least once the past few days. This is the hottest week of summer so far. From coast to coast, it has been sizzling. In fact, each of the 48 contiguous states recorded actual air temperatures of 90 or higher on August 7. The red hot heat index map above (for yesterday afternoon) shows how the temperature feels. Basically, except for places where it was cloudy, or high elevation areas, such as the Rocky Mountains, the temperature index was above 90 degrees. Values of over 100 degrees were widespread in the Middle Atlantic states, the Mid West, Great Plains, the Southern Plains, and the Southwest. An excessive heat watch issued for many parts of the country for today and tomorrow means that the combination of high temperatures and high humidity (high dew point temperatures) are expected to create dangerous heat index values of between 100 and 115 degrees. In addition, alerts for unhealthy air (high pollution levels) have been issued for many urban areas. Fortunately, a cold front on Friday is expected to sweep away the high heat and humidity, bringing showers and storms, and cooler weather.