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East suffers another day of high heat and no air conditioning

1:08 AM, Jul 3, 2012   |    comments
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WASHINGTON (AP) -- People in the East are suffering through sweltering temperatures and there's not much letup in sight.

Nearly 1.8 million of them are without power in the aftermath of a round of severe storms that struck over the weekend. The outages extend from North Carolina to New Jersey and as far west as Illinois.

Utility officials say the power will probably be out for several more days for some people. That's because the storm arrived Friday with little warning and knocked out power to 3 million homes and businesses. Utility companies have had to wait days for extra crews traveling from as far away as Quebec and Oklahoma.

Adding to the urgency of the repairs are the sick and elderly, who are especially vulnerable without air conditioning in the sweltering heat. Many have sought refuge in hotels or basements.

Officials fear the death toll, already at 22, could climb because of the heat and widespread use of generators, which emit fumes that can be dangerous in enclosed spaces.

Associated Press

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