Heat Wave Claims 49 Lives

Triple-digit temperatures take toll in Midwest, Southeast
By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser User
Posted Aug 19, 2007 11:48 AM CDT
A young girl plays in the fountain at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles, Wednesday, Aug. 15. 2007. A heat wave continues in Southern California with National Weather Service reporting area...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The heat wave sweeping across the Midwest and Southeast has claimed at least 49 lives over the past week. Officials in Alabama and Memphis reported the 10 most recent deaths on Saturday, mostly elderly citizens. The weather forecast for next week predicts some relief from the triple digit-temperatures that has baked the two states for more than a week without a break. 

Memphis's senior centers are coordinating shuttle services and extended opening hours to get the elderly into air-conditioned environments. In Alabama, a nuclear power plant had to cut back output because the water it uses from a nearby river to cool down the reactors was too hot. But some are taking to the heat philanthropically: an anonymous donor gave over 20,000 bottles of water for kids to drink on school buses.