US heatwave soars as California wildfire rages

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Tens of millions of Americans already baking in a scorching heatwave braced on Saturday for record-setting temperatures to climb, while a major fire ravaged part of California.

The country’s central and northeast regions face the brunt of the extreme temperatures, which are not expected to peak until Sunday at the earliest and have sent public health officials scrambling.

More than a dozen states are under a heat advi-sory, with central US metropolitan areas such as Dallas and Oklahoma City expected to reach highs of over 100 degrees Fahrenheit (above 38 degrees Celsius) for at least the next five days.

A heat emergency is meanwhile in effect for cit-ies up and down the northeast coast, from Boston to Philadelphia to Washington.

Not even the usually cool Pacific Northwest will escape the far-reaching heat, with the region expected to face several days in the 90s next week.

The high temperatures, which demonstrate the threat of global warming, have already caused an uptick in emergency calls for heat-related illness.

Cities have meanwhile been forced to open cooling stations and increase outreach to at-risk communities such as the homeless and those without access to air conditioning.—AFP

 

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