Kansas City's current heat wave is suspected as the cause of two deaths, one of them a one-year-old boy.
The Kansas City Health Department announced Thursday that the county medical examiner is investigating the deaths of the child and a 60-year-old man as the first suspected heat-related deaths of the year.
No other [sic] details were available.
The metro area, along with eastern Kansas and all of Missouri, remains under an excessive heat warning expected to continue into next week.
Thursday's high hit 106 at Charlie Wheeler Downtown Airport and 105 degrees at Kansas City International Airport. The heat index reached as high as 108, according to the National Weather Service.
Temperatures are expected to back off a little for the weekend, but not much. The lowest we can expect will be about 100 on Sunday.
After that, the forecast is more heat, and lots of it.
Bowman said temperatures will stop climbing for just a few days as the mass of hot, dry air that has settled on the central and southern plains region flattens and expands to the east. By Thursday of next week, he said, it should be built all the way back up past 100.
"It looks pretty brutal," said Chris Bowman, a National Weather Service meteorologist in Pleasant Hill.
"For the next week, it doesn't look like there's any real relief."
These are late summer weather patterns only seen in June once every five years or so, according to weather service.
The unseasonable heat is driving people all over the area to take precautions and seek shelter.
More than 275 people found relief Thursday at cooling stations opened by the Salvation Army and the YMCA of Greater Kansas City.
The Salvation Army's eight community centers offer a place to cool off and a cold drink, and will remain open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. until the excessive heat warning is lifted. The Independence Crossroads location also offers cots to those who need a place to spend the night, and Salvation Army spokeswoman Amanda Waters said she expected at least 12 people to stay there Thursday night because of the heat.
The YMCA cooling stations will be open from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
The Kansas City Fire Department reported between seven and 10 heat-related medical emergencies by 4 pm. Thursday.
With the weekend forecast, North Kansas City's centennial festival has changed its schedule and plans to bring in several cooling devices.
"We didn't anticipate that the temperature would exceed the age of the city," said Debbie Van Pelt-McEnroe, a spokeswoman for the festival committee.
The carnival will not open until 6 p.m. Friday, but will open at 1 p.m. Saturday. The city plans to provide two misting tents and a mobile, air-conditioned command post with paramedics. The fire station on Howell Street, the North Kansas City Library and the North Kansas City Community Center will be open for festival attendees who need to cool off.
Anyone braving the outdoors Friday or Saturday can expect a heat index between 105 and 110.
Bowman said temperatures will stop climbing for just a few days as the mass of hot, dry air that has settled on the central and southern plains region flattens and expands to the east. By Thursday of next week, he said, it should be built all the way back up.
An ozone alert issued for Kansas City Thursday will continue Friday. The alert, issued by the Mid-America Regional Council, warns of an unhealthy amount of ozone, or smog, in the air at ground level.