PHOENIX — Phoenix continues to see relentless and record-breaking heat. On July 29, the city saw its 30th consecutive day of temperatures that reached 110 degrees or higher, according to the National Weather Service.
The trend has continued throughout the month of July.
Earlier in the month, a nearly 50-year-old record for consecutive days of 110 or higher heat was cracked. On July 18, Phoenix broke the 1974 record which was 18 days of 110 or high temperatures.
Saturday was the 6th consecutive day with highs of at least 115 degrees.
In total, Phoenix has seen 17 days this year with highs of at least 115 degrees.
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Extreme heat is dangerous and must be taken seriously, according to experts.
"It will kill you if you aren't paying attention to the signs," said Arizona Fire and Medical Authority Division Chief Ashley Losch during an interview with 12News in May.
Both heat exhaustion and heat stroke are dangerous, but heat stroke is the most dangerous.
Heat exhaustion can cause dizziness, excessive sweating, nausea/vomiting and/or cool and clammy, pale skin.
Heat stroke is much more serious. Signs include severe headache, confusion and a change in behavior. The body also stops sweating and will feel hot to the touch (heat stroke can present itself when the body reaches at least 103 degrees). If the person is in an altered state, don't give them water, instead call 911 to get help on the way.
Staying hydrated is one of the most important things someone can do during the scorching temperatures. How much to drink depends on the person, so experts say a good rule of thumb is to drink when thirsty.
Unhoused people are particularly at risk and most likely to die or become ill with the high temperatures.
Unhoused people accounted for about 40% of the 425 heat-associated deaths tallied last year in Maricopa County, home to Phoenix, during its hottest summer on record. More than half of the 425 deaths occurred in July and 80% occurred outdoors.
The heat is even taking a toll on Saguaro cacti in the Valley. According to experts, the cacti are wilting in the record-breaking heat wave. Hot nights are ruining the cacti's photosynthesis process.
“They literally can't function," Kimberly McCue with the Desert Botanical Garden said. "The way I describe it is, they start to suffocate.”
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