An unrelenting heat wave is burning through parts of the southwestern US, with Arizona predicted to see its longest stretch of extreme hot weather.
More than 113 million people across the country were under some form of heat warning, the National Weather Service (NWS) said.
The heat wave could force Phoenix to break its record 18-day streak of warmest days in a row.
Many cities are expected to rise above 100F (38C).
In his warning on Thursday, the NNSS.
The agency is predicting “disturbance temperatures” of up to 115F (46C) in some areas of the Southern Plains. In the West, temperatures are forecast to cross the 110F mark, with some relief overnight or next week.
“Unfortunately, the long-term outlook for the weekend and into next week is for an increasingly intense and oppressive heat wave,” the NWS said.
Officials in the state are urging residents to be careful navigating this heat wave. An estimated 700 people die each year in the US from heat-related causes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Precautions include limiting time outdoors during peak sun hours, staying hydrated, and being careful not to leave pets or children in locked vehicles.
Las Vegas, Nevada, is forecast to see a high of 117F (47C) on Sunday, matching the city’s record high of July 1942 and July 2021.
In El Paso, Texas — a popular corridor for immigrants entering the U.S. — temperatures have stayed in the triple digits for 27 straight days, and temperatures are expected to continue.
This broke the city’s 23-day streak of record high temperatures in 1994.
Freezers opened for the homeless in Phoenix, volunteers called for health care for the elderly and those living alone.
The city has given away thousands of water bottles through its heat relief program.
The US heatwave comes amid similarly high temperatures in Europe, where Spain, France, Greece, Croatia and Turkey are expected to hit above 104F (40C).
There are reports of people including tourists collapsing due to the heat in Italy. At least one person is dead.
The global average temperature last week was 63F (17.23C), the highest ever recorded.
Scientists say the temperature is being driven by climate change, but some of the current problems also stem from a naturally occurring weather pattern called El Niño, which causes rising temperatures and occurs every three to seven years.
Due to human-induced climate change, heat waves have become more frequent, more intense and longer. The world has warmed by about 1.1C since the start of the industrial age, and temperatures will continue to rise unless global governments make drastic cuts in emissions.