Summer officially arrives, and heat will continue through weekend

Credit: Nick Graham

Credit: Nick Graham

Summer officially arrives today, but don’t tell that to Butler County residents coping all week with effects of a heat dome that have kept temperatures in the 90s with a heat index approaching 100.

Officials issued a heat advisory for southwest Ohio that has been in effect since Monday and will continue through Friday night.

Many area cities have opened colling centers for those in need.

Matthew Campbell, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Wilmington, said Friday will “most likely” be the hottest day of the heat wave, with high temperatures forecast at 95, 96 and 95 the next three days.

While the highs get much of the attention, the overnight lows will only drop into the mid-70s. That means air conditioners won’t get too much of a break.

NWS Meteorologist Allen Randall said the region sees some form of heat wave most years, but added that the current surge came a little bit early.

“This would be more typical in three weeks or a month,” Randall said.

Saturday could hit 96, with Sunday dropping to around 90, according to the NWS. The first day predicted to be below 90 in a week will be Monday, with an expected high near 85. Tuesday will rise to around 91.

Campbell said no matter where you are in the area, it’s tough to escape the heat, and especially the humidity, which is adding 5-10 degrees to what it actually feels like.

“In the metro area, in an urban heat island, it can feel a few degrees warmer, but in terms of feeling hot an humid, it’s pretty much areawide,” Campbell said.

Health officials have said it is crucial to take steps to reduce heat and sun exposure.

Excessive heat can lead to heat exhaustion and heat stroke, and sun exposure can lead to sunburn — all of which can be dangerous.

It is important to time outdoor activities to the coolest part of the day if possible and to drink large amounts of water and electrolyte-rich drinks like Gatorade.

Using a buddy system when outside in extreme heat is helpful.

Officials also encourage checking on older community members and people with preexisting conditions, encouraging them to use air conditioning if they have it or take advantage of the cooling centers if necessary.

Staff writers Jessica Orozco, Ispiro Halabi and Lillian Ali contributed to this report.