World Extreme heatwave sparks emergency warning for Oregon as Kentucky prepares for hundreds to lose homes in deadly flooding
Europe counts cost of heatwave, Spain PM says more than 500 died
Spanish PM Pedro Sanchez cites figures released by the Carlos III Health Institute on the number of heat-related deaths.Climate change protesters said the scorching weather should be a wake-up call for the continent.
Parts of the United States are approaching their eighth straight day of extreme temperatures, even as other regions suffer through deadly floods.
Flooding in eastern Kentucky — in the south-east of the US — has caused at least eight deaths so far, with the death toll expected to reach double digits in coming days.
At the same time, in the nation's north-western state of Oregon, officials are concerned a prolonged heatwave could lead to more deaths than the previous shorter heatwave in June 2021.
More than 100 people were killed by the heat in Oregon last year.
The simultaneous weather events are the latest in a series to hit the US this year, asand .
Kentucky flooding ‘devastating,’ officials expecting loss of life, Beshear says
Severe flooding in Kentucky has resulted in "massive" property damage and will likely lead to loss of life as rescue efforts continue, Gov. Andy Beshear said Thursday morning.Torrential rains unleashed flash flooding and mudslides in parts of Kentucky, slamming the eastern part of the state particularly hard after thunderstorms dumped several inches of rain over the past few days.
State of emergency declared as Kentucky floodwaters rise
The floodwater in Kentucky has yet to reach its peak and the damage could take years to repair, according to Governor Andy Beshear.
Mr Beshear declared a state of emergency in six of the state's 120 counties after a series of storms drenched the eastern part of the state.
"We are currently experiencing one of the worst, most devastating flooding events in Kentucky's history," the Governor said. "Hundreds will lose their homes.
"This is an ongoing natural disaster, with more rain expected tonight that could worsen the situation."
Among the dead was an 81-year-old woman in Perry County. Local authorities said several people remained unaccounted-for.
The flooding left 24,000 households without power, according to the poweroutage.us website.
Death toll rises in Kentucky flooding as rescue efforts continue
Kentucky, Virginia and West Virginia have issued emergency declarations and deployed search and rescue amid flooding.“The tough news is 16 confirmed fatalities now, and folks that’s going to get a lot higher,” Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear said during a Friday briefing.
Roads turned into rivers as high as the leaves of nearby trees, with power poles poking out of greenish-brown water.
The national guard and the state police used helicopters and boats to rescue people marooned by floodwaters.
Evacuation centres were opened, however, Mr Beshear warned that some of the facilities themselves were hard-hit by the storms and may not have power or some amenities.
Trucks have been dispatched to deliver drinking water to parts of the region.
Excessive heat warning issued in Oregon
Meanwhile, temperatures have run as high as 43 degrees Celsius in some inland areas of Oregon, sparking an excessive heat warning by the National Weather Service.
The forecast means Portland is likely to reach its eighth straight day of temperatures above 32C this weekend, a standard reached only four times on record, according to the Oregonian newspaper.
Three of those have been in the past 13 years.
Kentucky flooding death toll rises to 25: governor
Devastating flooding in Kentucky killed 25 people and the toll is expected to rise, the southern US state's governor said Saturday as rescuers continued their search for survivors. Our death toll has risen to 25 lost, and that number is likely to increase," tweeted Governor Andy Beshear, who had previously put the death toll at 16. "To everyone in Eastern Kentucky, we are going to be there for you today and in the weeks, months and years ahead. We will get through this together," he added.
Oregon officials said many victims of the 2021 heatwave lacked air conditioning, a feature less common there than in other, hotter states.
Large parts of the US have experienced extreme temperatures in recent days, which scientists said was exacerbated by climate change.
About 100 people took refuge in one Portland cooling centre on Wednesday night, said Mark Meininger, part of the volunteer emergency team.
Mr Meininger said the prolonged, lower-level heat this year might become more difficult for emergency managers and the public to contend with.
Last year's extreme temperatures saw dozens of cities smash their temperature records.
"Last year we just had record-setting, blasting heat," Mr Meininger said.
"What we have this year is an odd, cumulative consequence of hot weather that slowly gets people to realise they need to get out of the heat."
The Heat Isn’t Going Away .
This current blast feels a lot like the last one, and the one before that, which is exactly the problem.Many U.S. cities are breaking (or repeatedly breaking) the threshold of triple-digit temperatures. Salt Lake City tied its all-time mark for most consecutive 100-degree days. Boston and Denver each recently broke 100 degrees to set daily heat records. And Newark, New Jersey, did the same—on its fifth straight day in the triple digits.