Heat Indexes Threatening to Hit 115 Saturday

Saturday is shaping up to be just as steamy as Friday, with the high temp in the D.C. area expected to be reach 100 degrees again. But it's not the heat, it's the humidity! The heat index is expected to peak at 105 to 115 degrees.

Probably not what you were hoping to hear.

At 8 a.m., it was already 84 degrees in Leesburg, Va., and 87 at Baltimore's Inner Harbor. NBC Washington meteorologist said the worst temps should be immediately inside and around the Beltway, especially concentrated in downtown D.C.

Friday's scorcher was a record-setter in some areas. The temp at Dulles reached 105 degrees, an all-time high. At Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, the high reached 106 degrees, one below the record there.

Closer to the District, the heat index at National Airport topped out at 121 degrees -- making it the second-highest in history. The record is still 122 degrees, set on July 16, 1980. Until yesterday, that date was also claimed the records for Dulles and BWI, too. "It was one of those days," said Bell.

This July is only coming in at 0.3 degrees cooler than July 2010, which was the hottest month on record for the area. Yes, ever.

The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for most of the region Saturday. The air quality is Code Red, which means it's unhealthful for the general population.

"Take extra precautions if you work or spent time outside," the The National Weather Service said in a release. "When possible, reschedule strenuous activities to early morning or evening. Know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Wear lightweight and loose-fitting clothing."

Due to the excessive heat, Metro has lifted the ban on drinking in stations on on trains -- as long as it's only bottled water.

Power companies say they are preparing to deal with outages. Pepco and Baltimore Gas & Electric say the region's power supply is expected to be enough to meet demand, but the utilities are advising customers to take steps to save energy. Pepco and BGE are staffing to quickly address any equipment issues that may arise from heat or potential storms resulting from the heat.

  • Set air-conditioning thermostats at 78 degrees and use an electric fan, which doesn't require as much energy, and the air will seem cooler without sacrificing comfort.
  • Keep window shades, blinds, or drapes closed to block the sunlight during the hottest part of the day and retain cooler air inside your home or business.
  • Limit the use of electrically heated water and turn off non-essential appliances and as many lights as possible.
  • Limit opening refrigerator or freezer doors.
  • Postpone using high-energy appliances like electric stoves, washing machines, dishwashers and dryers until the evening.

Tonight, the weather should be very humid and uncomfortable, with a few showers possible.

Now for the (sort of) good news: Sunday's temps should "only" be in the 90s.

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