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Deadly Heatwave Moves East Across United States
Published in Saudi Press Agency on 02 - 08 - 2006

Parts of the eastern United States were hit with a potentially deadly heat wave on Tuesday, with temperatures topping 38 degrees Celsius, but power-grid operators assured electricity demand could be met.
The heat wave is moving across the country from California, which suffered through more than two consecutive weeks of high temperatures that killed at least 126 people and caused some power failures.
Forecasters predicted 38-degree heat in Detroit, St. Louis, and Chicago on Tuesday and temperatures that would top 38 degrees in Philadelphia and Washington on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The National Weather Service (NWS) issued excessive heat warnings and said the heat index—which measures how hot it actually feels when the humidity is combined with the air temperature—would reach 46 degrees Celsius in New York City on Wednesday.
“If people do not take precautions, we could be looking at a significant number of fatalities,” NWS warning coordinator Gary Conte said, adding that New York had not suffered such a series of hot temperatures since July 1999.
Electricity-grid operators did not expect they would have to order rolling blackouts, which are aimed at preventing uncontrolled outages, due to any lack of generating capacity. In some regions, however, power-distribution cables could fail, like those which recently left 25,000 New Yorkers without power for as long as a week.


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