For millions of Americans, Halloween wasn’t the only horror in store this week: Blistering, unrelenting heat was certainly no treat.
Several cities across the country saw record-high Halloween temperatures on Monday. Among them: New Orleans, Louisiana, (89 degrees), Dodge City, Kansas, (90 degrees), Asheville, North Carolina, (81 degrees), Hunstville, Alabama, (88 degrees), Tallahassee, Florida, (90 degrees), Fort Smith, Arkansas, (89 degrees) and Colorado Springs, Colorado, (80 degrees).
Atlanta, Georgia, also set a new heat record at 86 degrees, a temperature nearly 20 degrees above average, WTVM.com reports. It was the latest day in the year that the city has ever been that warm.
“These temperatures are more like Labor Day than Halloween,” Atlanta meteorologist Brian Monahan said over the weekend, reporting on wildfires consuming parts of Georgia because of the scorching heat.
Atlanta’s 86-degree Monday marked the 12th time this year the city has either broken or tied a high temperature record, reported WTVM.com.
Forecasters have warned that the first few days of November will not bring respite to sweltering states.
On Tuesday, more heat records were broken as all-time November record highs were set in Austin, Texas (91 degrees), Birmingham, Alabama (88 degrees), Nashville, Tennessee (88 degrees), and Louisville, Kentucky (85 degrees), among several other cities.
Weather.com said record-high temperatures can be expected in parts of the Southeast, Midwest and Great Plains at least through Friday, with daily highs of up to 20 degrees above average. Even parts of New England will see temperatures in the 70s this week, very unusual for this time of year.
For the Southeast, where a crippling drought has already dried up rivers and devastated agriculture, the continuing dry and hot weather is expected to further exacerbate drought conditions.
“The abnormal warmth contributes to more moisture evaporating out of the soil. When the moisture does not get replenished, it’s like a vicious cycle,” AccuWeather meteorologist Mike Doll said this week.
In October, NASA said 11 of the past 12 months had set new global high-temperature records.