Philadelphia back in a heat wave

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Philadelphia has been under the broiler all day with near 100-degree temperatures and combined with the humidity, it felt like over 100.

The heat remained long after the sun went down, and will be sticking around for at least the next five days, which is why the city is under an excessive heat alert.

People in ocean city were getting cooled off from a refreshing ocean breeze, and they were paying attention to the heat at Penn's Landing where the Taste of Philadelphia event kicked off Friday night.

"It feels like boiling water," said Theresa Harrison. "It is just rolling off my back."

At the opening night of taste of Philadelphia the food was hot, the music was hot, and so were the people.

"Oh my Lord, I tell you it is hot! He plays ice hockey so most of the time we spend it at an ice rink and it's nice and cool. Out here? My goodness it's very hot," said Ken Elliott.

"I'm surviving. I made sure I brought some frozen water with me so I've been keeping it on me," said Judy Smith.

With more than a million people expected to take part in Wawa's Welcome America festivities over the next several days officials are taking the heat seriously.

The number of EMTs on duty at events has been increased and Fire Department paramedics are moving through the crowds.

"We've added a few more so they can roam around the grounds of Penn's Landing just so people can feel safe, and we feel better knowing there's someone right there in case someone really feels the heat," said Welcome America Executive Director Melanie Johnson.

"It feels like 105 degrees out here," said Lisa Wood.

Water misters will be set up Saturday to help the crowds cope with the heat.

Cool drinks are a must in the heat and the water ice was moving fast.

There is no way to escape the hot air outdoors, and because it is so easy to become sick or dehydrated, Mayor Nutter is asking everyone to keep an eye on each other the next few days.

"I ask everyone please check on your friends, check on your neighbors, check on your parents and grandparents," said Mayor Michael Nutter.

Officials also encourage residents to avoid strenuous activity and drink plenty of water.

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