The sun bore down and the temperature went way up Friday. Way up.
All over the area people sought relief from a scorching, sweltering final Friday of July. It will now go down as Washington D.C.’s hottest July on record.
On downtown streets, temperatures clocked in at well-above 100 degrees. Paramedics rushed to the White House gates for reports of several people struggling from the heat. Among them was an elderly woman.
“It’s about a hundred but it's gonna feel like a hundred twenty with all the car engines and stuff out here,” said Anthony Jones, a bike courier.
The heat was hardest on those without air conditioning. Some a/c units at the Franklin Park apartment in Greenbelt have been broken for weeks, said Dametra Garnett. Garnett said residents were promised the problem would be fixed last year, but that hasn’t happened yet.
The extreme heat is ruining camping vacations in College Park, too. Sleeping in the tents or campers without air conditioning tonight, you might as well be inside an oven.
The Fournier family from Quebec planned a 10-day family camping trip a year ago, so Daniel Fournier says they’ll stick it out. "No sleeping bags and open all the windows,” he says.
Throughout the day, records were set. At a Fairfax County gas station, the temperature reached 100 degrees inside where the mechanics were working. They had a fan on – but it made little impact on the oppressive conditions.
“It’s awful,” said mechanic Victor Manjo. “we need to drink a lot of water.”
On a hot day like Friday, eating outside or just sitting on a park bench were out of the question. Even traffic the busy crescent trail in Bethesda was much lighter than usual.
Biker Nancy Garfienkel was still brave enough to give her new wheels a spin.
"Going down is great but coming back up - It taxed me,” she said.
Not everyone was hiding from the heat. Rachel Spencer ran six miles in the morning because she’s training for a marathon and wanted to get out before the most intense heat of the day.
“I have a pretty good sense of when I get overheated--take it slow,” she says. “You don't need to end up in the hospital on a day like today.”