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How Hot Was It? Too Hot For Most People

June 17, 1994

Undated (AP) _ Records fell like sweat Friday as a shroud of hot, hazy, humid weather hung over the eastern half of the country.

The temperature in Milwaukee hit 94 well before noon, setting a record for the date for the third day in a row. The rest of the state also sweltered. Green Bay hit 94 to break a 73-year-old mark, and Madison set a record at 95.

″We’ll try to remember this when it’s 30 below next winter,″ said Steve Struss, who wore a ″Fun in the Sun″ T-shirt during a visit to the Madison zoo with his wife and daughter.

Buffalo, N.Y., also set a record for the third straight day. The mercury climbed to 93 on Friday and was expected to remain in the 90s on Saturday.

″It would be the earliest we’ve ever hit 90 degrees four consecutive days,″ said Dave Sage, a National Weather Service meteorologist.

Other cities setting records included: Burlington, Vt., 93; Cleveland 93; Flint, Mich., 95; Concord, N.H., 96; Fort Wayne, Ind., 98; and South Bend, Ind., 97;.

At least one heat-related death was reported. In Nashville, Tenn., a 2- year-old toddler died of heat stroke after accidentally being left for eight hours in a van that was supposed to drop him off at a day-care center.

In Chicago, seven firefighters were overcome by a fire at a sausage shop. They suffered minor injuries.

″We can only work for a few minutes at a time in this kind of heat,″ said Battalion Chief Fred Van Dorne.

It was so hot even the fans needed fans.

″I’m sunburnt, and I feel like I’m melting,″ said Karen Brown, who attended the BellSouth Senior Classic in Nashville, where temperatures soared into the 90s.

In Chicago, World Cup soccer fans faced the same problem. Temperatures hit 90 and the humidity made it feel like 103 in the windless city. Spectators wore sombreros and sipped soft drinks, beer and pina coladas.

Syracuse, N.Y., opened its city pools ahead of schedule to cool down residents - and their tempers. On Thursday, some Syracuse residents threw stones at firefighters who tried to turn off open fire hydrants.

Inner-city schools in Milwaukee set up large sprinklers as substitutes for open fire hydrants. Even so, two hydrants flowed within blocks of the 31st Street School, where 60 children played in a sprinkler.

″It was so hot the tar was coming apart,″ said Canisha Donelson, 10, who played in the sprinkler.

Not even ice cream could lure people into the street. The ice cream melts too fast, explained Ed Northrup, manager of 25 Skippy’s Ice Cream trucks in Syracuse, N.Y.

″People are inside in their air-conditioned homes or waving to us from swimming pools as we drive by,″ he said.

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