Splash time: Humidity rules as summer arrives

Mackenzie Moore • Updated Jun 21, 2018 at 9:06 AM

Herds of children flooded and scurried across the splash pad at Rotary Park Wednesday morning to beat the heat before the first day of summer.

The temperature had climbed to 88 degrees by noon, but the high humidity made temperatures feel several degrees higher. The Tri-Cities isn’t necessarily experiencing a heat wave, but temperatures are a little higher than usual, according to Pete Warren, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Morristown.

“Right now, we’re just experiencing temperatures that are a little above normal,” Warren said. “A heat wave is a certain period of time where the temperature is above normal for usual climatology. Of course, the month of June isn’t quite over yet, but so far we’ve had three days when the temperature has stayed above 90 degrees.

“Last year, we had eight of these days throughout the entire month. The most we ever had was 18 of these days back in 1943.”

Warren warned against heat exhaustion and urged people to stay indoors as much as possible during days with an increased temperature.

“During extreme heat with high humidity, your body loses water a lot faster than normal,” Warren said. “This is heat exhaustion, and it’s when the body doesn’t have enough water; it’s an over-exertion. The obvious is to stay indoors and stay hydrated.”

Pets suffer through the heat as do humans, and Warren placed importance of caring for any pets throughout the heat as well.

“The same advice goes for pets,” Warren said. “Keep them either indoors or in a shaded area, and make sure they get enough water to drink. It’s usually hottest during 3 p.m. all the way until the sunset.”

Residents in the Tri-Cities can expect temperatures to remain in the mid-80s to low 90s for the next 10 days, with no day’s humidity below 61 percent. There’s a high chance for scattered thunderstorms and precipitation for the next two weeks.

For more information, visit www.weather.gov. 

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