Extreme heat intensification over nearly half of US creates ‘heat emergency’

Extreme heat intensification over nearly half of US creates ‘heat emergency’


The heat will intensify for millions of people in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic on Thursday, creating a “heat health emergency” with nearly half the country experiencing dangerously high temperatures.

About 150 million people from coast to coast are under heat advisories Thursday after extreme heat spread to the densely populated I-95 corridor, bringing the highest temperatures of the year there.

The heat won’t let up either in the South and Southwest, where heat-related deaths are on the rise, emergency rooms are filling up with victims of heat-related burns, and even animals are falling victim to heat illness.

Live updates: Latest news about heat and severe weather

Heat indices — a measure of what a temperature feels like when factoring in relative humidity — are expected to reach 100 degrees Fahrenheit in many areas in the Midwest, mid-Atlantic and Northeast through Friday.

These kinds of temperatures can be deadly — heat kills more people in an average year than hurricanes and tornadoes combined — so both Boston and Philadelphia declared heat emergencies, opened cooling centers and warned residents to check on the elderly and other people more vulnerable. To suffer from heat illness. .

“Let’s be clear: Heat can kill,” New York City Mayor Eric Adams said he said on Twitter Thursday. “This is dangerous. Take precautions.”

New York also opened cooling centers as nearly 9 million residents across the country’s largest city are under an extreme heat warning until 9pm on Friday. Temperatures in the mid-90s combined with high dew points will raise the heat index and make it feel as hot as 105 degrees. These temperatures will feel hotter to millions of New Yorkers in the islands’ sweltering urban areas.

Temperatures also test infrastructure. PJM Interconnection — the nation’s largest power grid system — declared an emergency alert. This step activates all systems to be online, including those with planned outages.

PJM coordinates electricity for more than 65 million people in all or parts of Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia, West Virginia and Washington, D.C., according to its data. website.

The high heat has already disrupted work at some major oil refineries in the United States, one of several factors driving up gas prices.

Here are some other notable places that prepare and deal with extreme heat:

  • Washington DC: The nation’s capital is under a severe heat watch with temperatures expected to challenge 100 degrees. But they will feel hotter: Thursday could reach 104 degrees while Friday could reach 107 degrees.
  • BALTIMORE: The city of Charm City, Maryland, has activated its first Code Red extreme heat alert of the season through Saturday, according to a city news release. The announcement indicates that the city plans to open several cooling centers as temperatures in the area may reach above 100 degrees.
  • Connecticut: Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont has activated the state’s extreme hot weather protocol, effective through the weekend. Cooling centers across the state will be available, with the governor’s office warning that temperatures could range from 95 to 105 degrees. Residual impacts are expected to continue through the overnight hours, especially in urban areas across the state, according to a news release.
  • Missouri: Heat indexes in St. Louis and Kansas City will exceed 100 degrees on Thursday and Friday. Temperatures could reach below 100 degrees in both cities, with excessive heat warnings in effect.
  • Minnesota: The Twin Cities are under an extreme heat warning on Thursday, with heat indexes expected to reach 105 degrees. “A little cooling is expected tonight with temperatures remaining in the 70s overnight.” The NWS in the Twin Cities said.
  • Indiana: Indianapolis will see temperatures reach 100 degrees by Friday. The temperature index could reach 109 degrees on Friday.
  • PHOENIX: The center of an ongoing heat wave is expected to reach 110 degrees again on Thursday, the 28th straight day the temperature has exceeded 110 degrees. Some relief is expected to return to “normal” temperatures below 110 degrees by Sunday and into next week.
  • Texas: Triple-digit highs are expected across the state including Dallas, San Antonio, Amarillo and El Paso, where temperatures topped 100 degrees for a record 41 consecutive days.

Watch this interactive content on CNN.com

The Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and upper Midwest face an additional weather threat Thursday: strong to severe storms that could disrupt travel and lead to power outages amid the intense heat.

Short, isolated tornadoes cannot be ruled out, but the Level 2 out of 5 threat is primarily related to damaging winds that could affect the entire I-95 corridor from Washington, D.C., to Boston. Storms should develop in the early afternoon and into the evening and could impact the afternoon rush hour commute, so also look for flooding on the roads.

Parts of northern Wisconsin and eastern Minnesota, including Duluth, Minn., are under a Level 3 of 5 threat on Thursday for damaging storms that could produce wind gusts up to 75 mph with large hail. The Twin Cities are facing a level 2 out of 5 threat, also due to strong winds and hail. Strong wind gusts can easily down power lines and lead to a hot and miserable evening.

Watch this interactive content on CNN.com

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