SIZZLING JULY TEMPERATURES BAKE SOUTHERN PLAINS STATES
July 24, 2001 Late July temperatures averaging five to 10 degrees above normal are baking the states of New Mexico, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas and Arkansas. Temperatures throughout the region ranged from highs in the mid-90s in central New Mexico to highs of 108 degrees in southwest Oklahoma and 109 in central Kansas, according to NOAA's National Weather Service.
Hot and humid conditions prevail as a dome of high pressure continues to dominate the region. Despite the spate of I00-degree-plus temperatures across the region, no new records have been set. However, intense heat and high humidity have prompted NOAA's National Weather Service to issue numerous heat advisoriesmany of which remain in effect for central Texas and much of Oklahoma and Arkansas.
Near the center of the dome, Oklahoma has been particularly hard hit. Tuesday, July 24, marked the ninth consecutive day of 100-degree temperatures for metropolitan Oklahoma City where at least six deaths were attributed to the heat wave.
NOAA's Climate Prediction Center's 6 to 10 day outlook calls for the heat to continue, with the heat index, that is temperature and humidity combined, reaching up to 110 degrees in an area from Kansas City south through Texas and along Gulf coast states all the way to Florida.
In a normal year, an average of 175 people will succumb to summer heat waves in the United States, but any given year can vary dramatically from the norm. For example, one of the worst periods on record was the disastrous heat wave of 1980 which claimed more than 1,200 lives. Equally devastating was the summer of 1995 during which more than 1,000 people died of heat-related causes.
Excessive heat can be a killer,
but it doesn't have to be if you follow basic safety rules.
Eat small, light meals.
To protect others you should:
With the proper precautions you can beat the heat.
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