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US faces severe weather, extreme heat alerts, air quality warnings

The severe storms knocked out power for thousands in the Midwest during the Fourth of July weekend.
US face severe weather, extreme heat alerts, and air quality warnings
Posted at 5:26 PM, Jul 02, 2023
and last updated 2023-07-03 07:33:02-04

Millions of Americans experienced severe weather, including extreme heat alerts and air quality warnings across multiple states. 

On Sunday morning, the National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning for several counties in the Chicago area. By midday, suburban areas had received up to 6 inches of rain, according to the service. 

The severe storms knocked out power for thousands in the Midwest. As of 6 p.m. ET, over 55,000 power outages were reported in Illinois, according to poweroutage.us.There were also over 64,000 power outages in Indiana and over 62,000 in Missouri.

By Monday morning, power had been restored to about 14,000 in Illinois, 30,000 in Indiana and 11,000 in Missouri.

The storms cleared out smoke that drifted into the region from wildfires burning in Canada, but the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is warning those smoky conditions are headed to Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut next.

SEE MORE: Tips to protect your pets during July Fourth fireworks, celebrations

Meanwhile, several southern states have been hit with an oppressive heat wave, which is being blamed for at least 14 deaths.

These extremely hot, dry conditions are expected out in the western U.S. through July Fourth, raising concerns about fireworks sparking wildfires and worsening air quality.

Those concerns have prompted some cities to do away with traditional fireworks shows. Salt Lake City, Utah, instead opted for its first-ever drone light show.

In neighboring Colorado, the city of Boulder is doing the same thing, with their first drone show scheduled for this week.

A handful of cities in California also opted for the more environmentally friendly alternative.


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