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Heat Waves Are Getting Worse in These 45 Cities

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Over the next week, much of the United States will experience temperatures of 95 degrees or higher and the weather will be “miserably hot and humid,” the National Weather Service is warning. This latest heat wave is expected to stretch from the Midwest through the Northeast, putting more than 70 million people under heat watches, warnings and advisories.

In addition to daytime temperatures in the triple digits, dozens of locations are expected to experience record-high overnight temperatures, which can be especially dangerous because they put a person’s body under extra strain as the heart pumps harder to try to regulate the body’s temperature.

If you feel like heat waves are becoming more common, you’re not imagining things. According to new research from the U.S. Global Change Research Program, major cities in the U.S. experienced an average of two heat waves per year in the 1960s, and they’ve been hit with an average of six heat waves per year in the 2010s. Not only are heat waves occurring more frequently, but heat wave season is also lasting longer. Across the 50 major cities the research program analyzed, the average heat wave time period lasted 45 days longer in the 2010s than in the 1960s.

Do you think your city has been heating up? Keep reading to see how heat waves have changed in frequency and length in the 45 major American cities that were affected in both ways.

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Albany, New York

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 2 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

Jeremy Janus / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Albuquerque, New Mexico

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 2 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

Helen89 / Shutterstock.com

Allentown, Pennsylvania

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 2 or fewer heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images

Atlanta

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 61-80 days longer

Ryan Conine / Shutterstock.com

Austin, Texas

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 7 or 8 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 61-80 days longer

Melpomenem / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Baltimore

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

SeanPavonePhoto / iStock.com

Birmingham, Alabama

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 61-80 days longer

Boston

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: Not statistically significant
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

Davel5957 / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Buffalo, New York

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 2 or fewer heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: Not statistically significant

Eric Krouse / Shutterstock.com

Charlotte, North Carolina

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

Sean Pavone / Getty Images

Chicago

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

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Cincinnati

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

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Cleveland

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

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Columbus, Ohio

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

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Dallas

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

Davel5957 / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Detroit

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

DenisTangneyJr / iStock.com

Fresno, California

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 61-80 days longer

SeanPavonePhoto / iStock.com

Hartford, Connecticut

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: Not statistically significant
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

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Knoxville, Tennessee

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

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Las Vegas

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

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Los Angeles

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: Not statistically significant
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

Davel5957 / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Louisville, Kentucky

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

Memphis, Tennessee

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

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Miami

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: More than 8 heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 61-80 days longer

Sean Pavone / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Milwaukee

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

JacobH / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Nashville, Tennessee

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

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New Orleans

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: More than 8 heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: More than 80 days longer

Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

Oklahoma City

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

f11photo / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Philadelphia

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

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Phoenix

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

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Pittsburgh

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

ARTYOORAN / Shutterstock.com

Portland, Oregon

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

Richard Cavalleri / Shutterstock.com

Providence, Rhode Island

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 2 or fewer heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

Sharkshock / Shutterstock.com

Raleigh, North Carolina

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 61-80 days longer

Richmond, Virginia

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 61-80 days longer

pick-uppath / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Salt Lake City

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images/iStockphoto

San Antonio

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 21-40 days longer

Ron and Patty Thomas / Getty Images/iStockphoto

San Francisco

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 7 or 8 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: More than 80 days longer

dennisvdw / Getty Images

San Juan, Puerto Rico

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: More than 8 heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: More than 80 days longer

Sergey Novikov / Shutterstock.com

Seattle

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

Charles Knowles / Shutterstock.com

St. Louis

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

Jeff Donald / Shutterstock.com

Tampa, Florida

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 7 or 8 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 61-80 days longer

Davel5957 / iStock.com

Tucson, Arizona

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

Davel5957 / Getty Images

Tulsa, Oklahoma

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 3 or 4 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 41-60 days longer

Imagesbybarbara / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Virginia Beach, Virginia

  • Increase in the number of heat waves per year: 5 or 6 more heat waves
  • Increase in the length of the heat wave season: 61-80 days longer

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Methodology: Data was sourced from the U.S. Global Change Research Program. Heat waves were analyzed from 1961 to 2017 for 50 large U.S. metropolitan areas in terms of (1) changes in the number of heat waves per year (frequency) and (2) the number of days between the first and last heat wave of the year (season length). The data focuses on the 50 most populous U.S. metropolitan areas that have available weather data from a consistent location, hence why major cities including Houston and New York were not included.