The crazy, oppressive heat that buckled records Saturday will squat over metro Atlanta for at least another day before giving way to downright pleasant-sounding double-digits.
Saturday's high hit 106, making it the hottest day ever in the city of Atlanta. The new mark breaks the previous record of 105, last seen in July 1980.
Channel 2 Action News meteorologist David Chandley said Sunday's temperature should top out at 103 before slipping to 99 Monday. Tuesday and Wednesday should be back closer to normal, with highs around 94 and a 30 percent chance of some relief from afternoon thunderstorms.
And talk about a purple haze, metro Atlanta's air quality was so poor Friday that the area shot past a Code Red to a Code Purple. The Clean Air Campaign said that meant air quality reached "very unhealthy" levels. An advisory Saturday predicted the region again would exceed Code Red, but that wouldn't be known until Sunday morning.
The last time air quality was this poor was Aug. 15, 2007. The organization bases its alerts on data from the Environmental Protection Agency.
If there was good news from the heat wave it was that no deaths had been reported by late afternoon Saturday, although a number of metro hospitals reported seeing patients with symptoms of heat exhaustion. Northside Hospital-Cherokee said they treated a half dozen people, while Atlanta Medical Center treated two.
At Piedmont Hospital, the medical director, Dr. Jeffrey Oyler, said there have been cases of dehydration but not an unusual amount. "Now that the real heat is kicking in, it's so oppressively hot a lot of people are staying in, which is good," Oyler said.
There are resources available to beat the heat. More cooling stations have opened and all 12 of the city of Atlanta's swimming pools are open from noon to 7 p.m. Sunday, with seven of them offering free admission for the day. Go to ajc.com for a complete list.
The Salvation Army also will have two cooling stations open Sunday — one in Lawrenceville and another in Decatur. Maj. Todd Hawks, commander of the Salvation Army's Metro Atlanta division, said its shelter on Luckie Street downtown is at capacity.
Staff writer Christopher Seward contributed to this article.
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