The good news … if Thursday’s temperatures reach the predicted high of 101 degrees, it’s not as hot as it could be.
South Bend’s record high temperature — 109 degrees — was recorded on July 24, 1934, according to records kept by the National Weather Service.
The bad news(for us right now) … if Thursday’s temperature pushes past the 100 degree mark, it will be the first time in more than a decade.
Based on readings from the National Weather Service’s observation station at the South Bend Regional Airport, the last time the temperature was recorded in triple digits occurred July 30, 1999.
So, why now?
Courtney Obergfell, meteorologist with the weather service’s northern Indiana office, said a ridge of high pressure has been slowly moving across the country, trapping hot, dry air moving in from the south.
“The plains have been setting record highs, and now the ridge is shifting over us,” Obergfell said.
Besides the high temperature, that ridge of pressure is also likely to keep out much moisture, meaning a continuation of extremely dry weather that has plagued most of Indiana for the past two months.
Because of the extreme conditions, the Indiana Department of Environmental Management has declared Thursday an “air quality action day,” meaning high levels of ozone pollution are likely.
IDEM is asking people to cut back on personal driving by carpooling, biking, walking and combining trips via vehicles.
Likewise, Indiana’s Department of Labor is cautioning employers to make provision’s for the expected heat, like providing water, periodic rests and shade.
“A worker should not depend on thirst to signal when and how much fluid to drink,” said a labor depart-ment press release. “In fact, most individuals exposed to hot conditions drink fewer fluids than needed because of an insufficient thirst drive. Workers should drink five to seven ounces of fluids every 15 to 20 minutes to replenish necessary fluids.”
Although temperatures are not expected to climb above 100 on Friday, Obergfell said the area is expected to see a continuation of hotter than average weather.
“The normal for this time of year is about 84 degrees,” Obergfell said. “The temperature will be at least above 90 for the next week, which is well above normal.”
- Elkhart Cooling Center: New York Central Railroad Museum will be open during day hours as a cooling center, says Elkhart Mayor Dick Moore. The museum is on South Main Street, just south of the Main Street railroad crossing.
- Animal care: Make sure all animals outdoors have fresh water and shade.