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Temperatures reach record levels for third straight day

July 08, 2010|By EBONI JAGGERS
  • Raymond Kwek loads a trailer with bags of ice Thursday at the Reddy Ice Distribution Plant in Martinsburg, W.Va. Plant manager Rich Parsons says that he's seen an approximately 35 percent increase in sales due to the hot weather.
Ric Dugan, Staff Photographer

o Air quality alert in effect

o Hazardous weather outlook

Another day, another record.

With a reading of 99.2 degrees at 3:13 p.m., Thursday was the third straight day that Hagerstown tied a record for a high temperature.

The mark tied the record of 99 degrees set on July 8, 1988, according to i4weather.net, a website maintained by local weather observer Greg Keefer.

Thursday's heat index reached 106 degrees at 3:09 p.m., according to the website.

Tuesday's high temperature was 100 degrees, and the mercury topped out at 102 degrees Wednesday, Keefer's records show.

The extreme temperatures have caused residents to crank up the air conditioning and to stay indoors to find relief from the heat.

The sudden increase in the use of air-conditioning units has created one of the busiest weeks in some time for Cumberland Valley Heating and Air Conditioning, office manager Melissa Matheny said Wednesday.

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Matheny, 39, said the company was doing its best to get units ready for use as quickly as possible.

"This week has been the worst since the weather's been this way," she said. "We're running about 25 to 30 calls a day, and that's over average for what we do."

The company has locations in Hagerstown, Pennsylvania and West Virginia, but the majority of calls have been from Maryland residents, Matheny said.

She said most of the calls are to replace or repair older units that have become backed up because of excessive use.

A representative from Lowe's said air-conditioning units and portable fans have flown off shelves in its Hagerstown stores this week. Only about a dozen units remained in stock Wednesday, the representative said.

The National Weather Service forecast for Friday is for a high temperature of 92 degrees in Hagerstown. Saturday's high is expected to reach 86 degrees, according to the weather service.

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