TUESDAY’S WEATHER: Extreme heat and hazy skies

Canadian wildfires causing another wave of Code Orange air quality alerts

It’s not just the extreme heat making it difficult to spend much time outdoors Tuesday, it’s also the haze from Canadian wildfires.

High temperatures in metro Atlanta are predicted to top out in the mid-to-upper 90s, but with high humidity, the heat index could get close to or break the 100-degree mark, according to the National Weather Service.

“As you’re out running errands, if you take your furry friends along with you, don’t leave them in the car. That goes for pets as well as your children,” Channel 2 Action News meteorologist Eboni Deon said. “Look before you lock. That will be the advice over the next couple of days as temperatures rise well above normal.”

Stay hydrated and take frequent breaks in the shade if you have to spend prolonged time outside. But you might want to stay indoors as much as possible if you are sensitive to pollutants. That’s thanks to the more than 800 wildfires burning in Canada, the smoke from which has reached the metro area for at least the third time since early last month.

Wildfire smoke is a mix of gases and fine particles from burning vegetation and other materials and can travel hundreds of miles and cause health concerns, according to the NWS. With a Code Orange air quality alert in effect, those who suffer from allergies, asthma or other respiratory issues — especially children or older adults — should avoid prolonged or heavy exertion outdoors.

The smoke is also impacting visibility, so take it a bit slower on the roads.

Canadian wildfire smoke drapes over Atlanta on July 17, 2023.

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

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Credit: Channel 2 Action News

For the next couple of days, the heat will be the main headliner, even with rain in the forecast. Showers moving in from Tennessee are expected to reach the metro area by Wednesday afternoon.

“We’ll have some cooling relief from the rain, but as we dry out through the afternoon, temperatures will crank back up and it is going to remain very hot and steamy,” Deon said.

Further south of the metro, heat advisory levels could be reached Wednesday as feel-like temperatures could climb up to 108 degrees if the rain doesn’t make it that far into Central Georgia, the NWS warns.

By the weekend, temperatures will cool back down to the more seasonable 90-degree average high for this time of year.

Five-day forecast for July 18, 2023.

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

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Credit: Channel 2 Action News

» For a detailed forecast, visit The Atlanta Journal-Constitution weather page.

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