It's turning out to be an unusually hot summer in Kentucky, and authorities are warning people to take extra precautions as heat indexes reach the high 90s in the next couple of days.
A heat advisory was issued for Eastern Kentucky for Tuesday and Wednesday.
With afternoon highs of 92 to 97 expected, forecasters advised people to find the coolest place they can, to wear light clothes and take extra precautions with children and automobiles.
In Lexington, the forecast calls for highs of 94 Wednesday and 95 Thursday, with a heat index that makes it feel like 97 both days.
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"Then we're getting some rain coming through with the front on Friday so that will cool us down, and the high in Lexington looks to be around 88," said Andrea Lammers, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Louisville.
The expected hot weather and sunshine is likely to worsen air pollution. Lexington officials have declared Air Quality Advisory days for Wednesday and Thursday.
Ground-level ozone and particulate matter are expected to be high. An air quality index of 119 means that in addition to people with chronic health conditions, such as asthma, active children and adults should limit prolonged outdoor activity and physical exertion. Air pollution usually is worse in the late afternoon and early evening.
The best part of the forecast for the next couple of days, the weather service said, is that the humidity won't be as high as it was during 90-plus days last month, so we should feel cooler.
Kentucky is coming out of a June that was one of the warmest ever recorded. Temperatures averaged 77 degrees across the state — 5 degrees above normal.
It was the warmest June on record in Louisville, London and Jackson. Lexington saw its seventh-hottest June, with Paducah, Bowling Green and Frankfort also recording top-10 finishes.
Lexington already has 10 days of 90 degrees or hotter this summer, said Michael Mathews of the University of Kentucky Agricultural Weather Center.
Last summer, there were six for the whole season, he said: four in June and two in August.
It could be much worse. The record high temperatures for Wednesday and Thursday in Lexington were, respectively, 101 and 106, both set back in the awful summer of 1936.