Crippling heat is gripping Texas for the third week in a row, with tens of millions of people in other southern states facing scorching conditions this week as well. It’s a brutal heat wave that authorities say «shows no signs of abating.»
Much of Texas continues to swelter in triple-digit temperatures, and statewide heat records have been broken in what has been a blistering start to summer. Excessive heat advisories and warnings are also in place throughout the Southwest and parts of New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida. according to the National Weather Service.
in a update mondayThe agency said the oppressive heat has been caused by an «upper-level stagnant ridge over the south-central US over the coming days.
In Texas, San Angelo hit a record high of 112 degrees Fahrenheit (44 degrees Celsius) on Sunday, surpassing the previous record of 104 F (40 C) set in 1994. That same day, Del Rio set a new high temperature record, reaching 110F (43C). The previous record of 106 F (41 C) was set in 1994, according to the meteorologic service. The agency said it was the eighth day in a row that Del Rio had set a daily high temperature record.
Authorities urged people to take precautions during the heat wave, particularly those considered vulnerable populations such as children, the elderly and people with chronic illnesses.
Heat causes more deaths in the United States each year than any other weather event, including tornadoes, floods, and hurricanes. according to the weather service.
Texas authorities said a 14-year-old boy became ill and eventually died over the weekend while hiking in Big Bend National Park, where temperatures reached 119 degrees F on Saturday. The boy’s stepfather also died while seeking help, according to the National Park Service.
Studies have shown that climate change is making heat waves more frequent and more intense, increasing the risks of heat-related illnesses and deaths, droughts, and wildfires.
In addition to the heat records already set in Texas, forecasters say more could drop this week, as triple-digit temperatures are expected in parts of Missouri, Arkansas, Tennessee, Texas and Louisiana.
The weather service said on Tuesday that temperatures are not expected to drop much overnight, adding to dangerously hot conditions in these regions.
Heat index temperatures, which represent the conditions felt by the human body when humidity and air temperature are combined, are expected to reach triple digits over the next few days across the South, including index values as high as 110 F (43 C) in Little Rock, 111 F (44 C) in Houston, and 117 F (47 C) in New Orleans.