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Excessive Heat in the Quad Cities Caused by 'Heat Dome'

National Weather Service

The weather system behind the high temperatures this week sounds like something out of a science fiction book.

The National Weather Service issued a heat advisory in the Quad Cities Wednesday. It then issued an excessive heat warning from noon on Thursday through 9 pm on Friday.

On Thursday, the forecast is 99 degrees, with a heat index near 110. On Friday, the high is 100 degrees, with a heat index of 111. When the heat index hits 105, an advisory is upgraded to a heat warning.

Brian Pierce is a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in the Quad Cities. He says the reason for the heat is something called "a heat dome."

"It's a persistent region of high pressure that traps heat over a particular area and it can linger for days to weeks."

A heat dome is typical for summers in the deserts of the Southwest. But he says the weather system has been heating up the West Coast, Gulf Coast, and the Southeast. And now it's spreading into the Plains and the Midwest.

He says storms and other factors later this week could temper the heat.

The heat might be dangerous for those spending a long time outside or in homes without air conditioning. During the heat advisory, people should drink lots of water, check on loved ones, and never leave children or pets in the car.

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Rachel graduated from Michigan State University's J-School and has a background in broadcast and environmental journalism. Before WVIK, she worked for WKAR Public Media, Great Lakes Now, and more. In her free time, she likes to cook, hike, and hang out with her cat.