Sweltering heat, severe weather risk for Independence Day

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Tuesday, July 4, 2023
First Alert Afternoon Forecast: July 4
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Hot day gives way to slight risk for severe storms

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Sweltering heat and a chance for severe storms marked Independence Day in 2023.

Temps reached into the mid 90s with feels-like temps up to 105 degrees. A level 1 risk of isolated severe storms exists for the afternoon and evening. Damaging winds will be the main top threat.

Today marked five straight days with a high above 90 degrees for RDU. We've recorded highs of 89+ for 11 days in a row now.

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But nonetheless, people made the best of celebrating the Fourth of July in sweltering heat.

"It's hot," said Raleigh resident Lisa Howard.

"We brought water, we're ready to go," said Wake Forest resident Chelsea Ferracane.

The soaring temps did not stop folks from packing into Downtown Apex for a street festival and in Wake Forest, kids kicked off the Independence Day festivities with a parade.

Children decorated bikes or scooters with American flags and all sorts of sparkly streamers.

"They spent all day yesterday decorating the bikes," said Wake Forest parent Stacey Coffman.

Her son Logan Coffman said, "I'm very excited."

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There was essentially a block party outside of Holding Park.

"We're going to hit (the party) here and then we're going to hit the pool," said Howard.

Families were cooling off at the pool and firefighters were doing double duty.

First responders were serving up hot dogs and hamburgers while also making sure everyone was staying safe with this extremely humid weather.

"We're trying to keep (people in the) shade over here, not that we have any control over that, but we're trying to make sure that folks know stay out of the heat, we got plenty of water for them," said Wake Forest Fire Chief Ron Early.