Cooler air also bringing more storms, power outages

8:47 PM, Jul 8, 2012   |    comments
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RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - A cold front moving southward through the eastern half of the country is finally cooling things off after nearly a week of oppressive heat.

But the front did not arrive before more records were set today.

The National Weather Service says North Carolina's Triangle area suffered through a sixth straight day of temperatures hitting 100 degrees or more, the area's longest stretch since the weather service began keeping records in 1944.

Forecasters say the front should begin to ease temperatures in North Carolina starting tomorrow, as it has farther north. In Michigan today, the weather service says highs made it only to the 70s and 80s, with Ypsilanti the hot spot at 88.

Utilities are reporting progress with restoring power to locations that have been without it since violent storms swept across the region more than a week ago.

But the front is bringing the threat of more severe storms.

In West Virginia, Appalachian Power says storms have forced it to halt work in some areas because of concern for workers' safety. At last count, about 77,000 homes and businesses were still without electricity in the state and the number of outages is increasing again.

Outages also number in the thousands in Virginia, Ohio, Michigan and New Jersey.

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