The Heat Wave Across the South and Southwest: By the Numbers

A suffocating heat wave has swept across the South and Southwest in the United States, bringing dangerous temperatures and breaking heat records. Here’s what the numbers tell us about the heat and how it is affecting Americans.

  • More than 100 million people in the United States are currently under excessive heat warnings and heat advisories

  • Record-high temperatures are forecast for this weekend in 45 locales, mostly in Southern or Western states like Texas and Nevada, as well as Idaho and Oregon.

  • In California alone, 25 million people will be under heat advisories or excessive heat warnings this weekend.

  • Death Valley National Park is projected to reach or pass 130 degrees Fahrenheit, almost reaching the world record temperature of 134 degrees Fahrenheit recorded there in 1913.

  • Las Vegas may have three consecutive days with highs of 115 degrees Fahrenheit, which has only happened once before, in 2005. It is forecast to challenge its record temperature of 117 degrees Fahrenheit on Sunday.

  • For 29 days, El Paso reached 110 degrees Fahrenheit or hotter.

  • Phoenix reached 15 consecutive days at or above 110 degrees Fahrenheit on Friday. With heat unlikely to let up over the weekend, the city could beat its previous record of 18 days a row with temperatures above 110.

  • Forecasters say there’s an 86 percent chance that St. George, Utah, will reach or exceed its record-high temperature of 117 degrees Fahrenheit on Sunday and Monday.

  • The average high temperature in Miami from July 1-13 was 94.5 degrees Fahrenheit — the hottest on record for that period.

  • California’s Central Valley could see highs of 112 degrees Fahrenheit this weekend.

  • Some 21 days after wildfire smoke from Canada plagued New York and much of the Northeast, thick smoke from the fires is still afflicting several Canadian provinces and pushing into the Northern Plains and Great Lakes regions of the United States.

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