Originally created 08/24/02

Heat wave continues to test region's cool



Armed with a water hose, Lindsey Sturgis used one word to describe Friday's weather - hot.

"The humidity is definitely up today," he said, wiping his face with a towel.

Like most Augusta residents, Mr. Sturgis and his fellow employees at Frank's Hand Car Wash off Walton Way were trying to stay cool.

"There's no way you could just stay out here all the time," Grady Edwards said. "After we wash a car, we take a break and get something to drink."

As a result of the blazing heat, sidewalk tables at restaurants were empty, the paths at Riverwalk Augusta saw little activity, and Richmond County Schools canceled all afternoon activities.

"It's hot and humid with highs reaching 100 degrees," said Jim Kilmer, a meteorological technician with the National Weather Service in West Columbia, S.C.

Despite the sweltering heat, Mr. Kilmer said, the temperatures aren't expected to break records. The high Friday was 98.

"The record for Aug. 22 was 104 degrees, which was set back in 1968," he said.

The temperatures have been above normal for this time of year.

So far, Mr. Kilmer said, the average high for the month is 94 degrees. The normal average for August is 90 degrees.

WEATHER OUTLOOK

The National Weather Service forecast a high of 101 degrees for today with a possibility of thunderstorms. The low tonight will be 72. For Sunday, the forecast high is 95 degrees with a chance of thunderstorms and a low of 68 that night.

Reach Ashlee Griggs at (706) 823-3552, or ashlee.griggs@augustachronicle.com.