Heat wave bakes US, dozens dead

Published: 08th July 2012 10:36 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th July 2012 10:36 AM   |  A+A-

By IANS

Unrelenting heat wave continued to bake much of the US, and it has caused the death of over 40 people so far.

Saturday's temperatures soared over 100 degrees Fahrenheit (nearly 38 degrees Celsius) in several major cities in the US Midwest and parts of the East Coast, Xinhua reported.

Washington saw a record 105 degrees Fahrenheit, while St. Louis and Indianapolis also saw thermometer reach triple digit.

The long stretch of heat wave is compounded by the fact that tens of thousands of people are still without power because of last week's violent storms.

The St. Louis medical examiner confirmed three heat-related deaths and said it was investigating six more. In Chicago, authorities said the heat had claimed 10 lives.

As of Friday, Virginia officials reported 10 heat-related deaths. In neighbouring Maryland, nine people died.

The heat wave caused the death of three elderly people in Ohio. Heat was also cited as a factor in three deaths in Wisconsin, two in Tennessee and three in Pennsylvania.

In addition to taking lives, the heat wave affected agriculture production in the Midwest, and corn and soybean crops were hit especially hard by heat and lack of rain.

In the hardest hit and hottest areas, reports quoted some farmers as saying they had already given up on their cornfields for the season.

Meteorologists said the recent heat waves were unusual because of how early in the summer it struck and its duration.

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