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Triple digit scorcher hottest since 1926

Published July 22. 2011 05:02PM

It's one of the worst July heat waves since 1926.

Eighty-five years ago, record temperatures occurred that still stand today.

Those records, though, could possibly topple today.

The nine-day heat wave of 1926, which happened well before "global warming" was part of our climate vocabulary, claimed dozens of deaths nationwide; six in Pennsylvania.

So far, the local area has been spared from any deaths by the present heat wave which has endured for nearly a week.

Lisa Johnson, information specialist at Blue Mountain Health System, said the emergency rooms at both the Gnaden Huetten Campus and Palmerton Hospital Campus have treated people for heat exhaustion this past week. She said about a half dozen people were treated at each facility for heat-related problems during the past two days.

Two things people have today that they didn't possess in the Roaring 20s are air conditioning and a better knowledge of heat exhaustion and similar health problems.

The high temperature in Allentown yesterday was 100 degrees at 4:49 p.m., according to the National Weather Service. The record for yesterday was 101, set in both 1980 and 1930.

The record high for today is 101 degrees set in 1926. The NWS is projecting a high of 100 degrees with a heat value of 107.

A record was tied in Reading yesterday when the mercury got up to 102 degrees.

That tied the 1926 mark.

The record in Reading today is 101, set in 1926.

In Philadelphia, the temperatures didn't hit 100 yesterday.

The high was 98, well below the record of 103 set in 1930. Today's Philadelphia record is 100, set in both 1957 and 1955.

The all-time high temperature for Allentown in July is 105, which happened on July 3, 1966.

In Reading, the hottest July dates since record-keeping began were on July 3, 1966, and July 3, 1898, when it was 103 degrees.

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