"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Phoenix sets national record for warmth wave duration

July 19, 2023 – The city of Phoenix set two heat records on Tuesday and is on the right track for a 3rd record today.

The temperature at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport reached a record high of 118 degrees Fahrenheit, beating the previous each day record of 115 degrees set in 1989. The normal temperature for the day is 107 degrees, in accordance with the town. National Weather Service Office.

The rising temperatures also put the town within the record books for a heat wave. Tuesday was the nineteenth day in a row that temperatures on the airport reached 109 degrees or higher, breaking the record of 18 days set in 1974. It's also a national record. None of the 25 most populous cities within the U.S. had such a protracted run of 109-degree days.

Phoenix has seen 22 days with temperatures of 110 degrees or higher this yr, and a number of other more are forecast. The city typically averages 21 days a yr with temperatures of 110 degrees or higher.

Another latest record is probably going this morning, the weather service tweeted, because the morning low of 97 degrees can be the best low temperature ever recorded in the town.

The lack of relief from warm temperatures overnight is tough on people’s bodies, which need a break from the warmth to operate properly, said Lara Cushing, PhD, assistant professor of environmental health sciences on the The California State University.

“We know from studies of extreme heat events that the health effects are worse when the heat continues overnight,” Cushing said in an article about hot nights on the university's website. “The body tries to maintain a relatively constant temperature within an area, and when you're exposed to heat for long periods of time, that's difficult.”

While healthy persons are vulnerable to heat stress during extreme heat events just like the one currently affecting much of the United States, those that are sick or have certain medical conditions are at particular risk.

“People with certain pre-existing conditions, such as heart or kidney problems, are even more vulnerable,” Cushing said. “And older people who live alone and pregnant women are particularly at risk – their temperature-regulating systems are often not as good at cooling the body.”