Oregon Declares Emergency as Extreme Heat Returns

'There can be no doubt after June that extreme heat can kill'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 11, 2021 2:55 PM CDT
Extreme Heat Is Returning to Pacific Northwest
In this June 28, 2021 photo, a display at an Olympia Federal Savings branch shows a temperature of 107 degrees Fahrenheit, in the early evening in Olympia, Wash.   (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

(Newser) – Extreme heat is returning to the Pacific Northwest, less than two months after a "heat dome" caused hundreds of deaths in the region. Oregon Gov. Kate Brown declared a state of emergency Tuesday and urged people to take steps to stay cool and check in on vulnerable relatives and neighbors, the Guardian reports. The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for much of Oregon and Washington, saying "dangerously hot conditions" with temperatures between 103 and 110 could persist until late Saturday. Meteorologist Tyler Kranz tells the AP that temperatures are likely to be the second-highest on record in the region, lower only than the record-breaking heat earlier this summer.

Kranz notes that while temperatures of 106 or 108 might be routine in states like Arizona, far fewer people in the Pacific Northwest have air conditioning. Officials in Oregon—where the earlier heat wave caused at least 83 deaths and possibly dozens more—are urging the public to take advantage of cooling centers and familiarize themselves with the symptoms of heat stroke, reports the Oregonian. At least 91 heat-related deaths were reported in Washington state during the earlier wave. "There can be no doubt after June that extreme heat can kill and we are treating these events like the health hazard they are," said Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury, who has also declared a heat-related emergency for her Oregon county. (Read more heat wave stories.)

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