Here’s Why Puerto Rico’s Recording-Breaking Heat Wave is So Concerning
Puerto Rico is facing a record-breaking heat wave that the National Weather Service reports will last another week. Earlier this week, Puerto Ricans felt the temperature rise to 95 degrees Fahrenheit with a heat index of 125 degrees on some parts of the island.
According to NBC News, the excessive heat has formed a “heat dome” on the U.S. territory that causes the heat to feel more severe as dry air, warm ocean waters, and high humidity combine in the area.
Meteorologist John Morales said the National Weather Service will issue a heat advisory when the heat index hits 105 degrees. At 125 degrees, Puerto Rico is experiencing “incredibly dangerous” conditions.
Another meteorologist, Ada Monzón, who works in Puerto Rico, urged residents to take care of themselves, their loved ones, and their pets as the island faces record temperatures over the next week. “We are ‘sailing in uncharted waters’ and we cannot let our guard down in the face of excessive heat,” she tweeted.
Creating more problems during these devastatingly hot days in Puerto Rico is the island’s unreliable power company, Luma Energy, which has yet to be fully repaired since the power grid failed during Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Fiona. It has gone out of service during the latest heat wave. The company asked Puerto Ricans to reduce their energy consumption, so they could avoid losing power.
“Being without power during extreme heat events is a serious risk, and can even lead to death,” Monzón tweeted.
According to Morales, the excessive heat in Puerto Rico could be a sign that Florida will experience a problematic hurricane season. “The hot ocean could fuel the development of more major category 3, 4, and 5 hurricanes – a concerning trend that’s already been documented across all of the world’s tropical belt,” Morales said. “There’s a lot to unpack this hurricane season.”