Heat hits schools, workers and tourists

As a heat advisory continues into its second day, sweltering conditions are prompting some local schools to close early due to a lack of air conditioning.

Madison and Mount Vernon High schools in Fairfax County closed at noon today. At Mount Vernon High School, 1,700 students were let out at noon. One of the school's two chillers were broken.

Classrooms on the upper levels topped 80 degrees.

“It feels like 100 degrees--even with the fans on it was really, really hot,” said student John Victoria.

Students were given bottled water but by noon they were loading onto buses and heading home.

“When it's hot the students are unfocused,” said Mount Vernon High School principal Nardos King. “The teachers are having a hard time keeping them's just miserable.”

Mount Calvary School in Forestville, Maryland closed at 12:30 p.m. this afternoon.

Baltimore County Schools dismissed three hours early and all afternoon school activities are canceled. Montgomery County Schools are checking their facilities this morning to see if all have working air conditioners.

Meanwhile, Walter Johnson High School seniors and their families had to wait outside for nearly an hour in 90 degree heat for their graduation ceremony to begin.

That meant trying to stay hydrated and using their mortar boards as fans. The long wait, with students in cap and gown, was brutal.

“It feels disgusting,” said graduate Lita Talisman. “I don't feel like I'm ready for graduation because my hair is getting messed up and my make-up. I'm sweating all over.”

Throughout the region, heavy, humid air is taking tough jobs and making them even harder. Paving crews along 17th Street can feel the heat waves Washington over them as asphalt spills onto the street. In Pi on Wheels, a food truck, workers keep 450 degree ovens fired up.

“They're on from the start to the finish, been on for an hour and a half now,” said Christopher Kelling of Pi on Wheels. “I would guess close to a 100 certainly.”

Kristen Shockey, who homeschools her kids, had Tuesday set aside for a field trip. She wasn’t going to let a little heat get interfere.

“This is just kinda the day we decided to do it and then it was this hot,” she said. “But it was a little too late to change so we're here.”

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