Fox News ain't perfect

Jim Nantz jnantz2 at GETNET.NET
Sat Jul 26 00:26:03 MDT 2003

Somebody at Fox News needs to get back to reporting the news.  Nothing in
the following article is out of the ordinary.  Also the article fails to
mention that the sheriff used to provide fans and swamp coolers for the
tents, but the inmates continually vandalized them.


PHOENIX  — It's so hot windshields are shattering or falling out, dogs are
burning their paws on the pavement, and candles are melting indoors.

People who live in the Valley of the Sun don't usually sweat the summer
heat. But this July is off the charts.

With the average high for the first three weeks of the month at 110
degrees, Phoenix (search) is on track to have the hottest July since the
National Weather Service (search) started keeping records in 1896. The
average July high is 104.

"Being in this heat is like walking through the hot lamps they use to bake
on a car's paint," said Roger Janusz, who was walking laps inside a mall
instead of outdoors Thursday morning.

The low temperature on July 15 was 96 degrees, a record for the date. The
high on July 16 was 117, making it the hottest day so far this year.

It's so hot that heat waves are creating turbulence for airplanes overhead,
said Sky Harbor International Airport (search) spokeswoman Deborah Ostreicher.

The searing pavement is burning the pads on dogs' feet and causing the
animals to suffer heat stroke. Susan Prosse, hospital manager at University
Animal Hospital, said when the pavement burns dogs' pads, they start
dancing around. Some pet owners put booties on their dogs for their protection.

Floral designer Brenda Zamora said her bouquets are dying in the delivery
trucks en route to their destinations. "This heat is not good for people,
pets, flowers — anything," she said.

It is especially hard on the sick and elderly.

Dr. Donald Lauer of Phoenix has seen an increase in people with
heat-related ailments this July. He said recently that when the air
conditioning broke in an elderly woman's motor home, she suffered heat
stroke, passed out and swerved off the road. She was not seriously hurt.

"Very few points of the human body are designed to function at 107 and
108," Lauer said.

Cars don't handle the heat well, either.

Terry Tapp, owner of an upholstery repair shop, said some windshields
shatter when the heat causes them to expand. Others fall out when the glue
holding them in place separates. The heat is also cracking and peeling

"But the funniest thing you see with this heat is that you get the
grumpiest people who come in that you have ever seen," Tapp said. "They
have no tolerance for anything."

Leslie Wanek, a National Weather Service meteorologist, said the
above-normal temperatures are due to a strong high-pressure system over the
western United States, a late start to the usual summer rains and the
heat-retaining effects of asphalt and concrete in this fast-growing
metropolis of about 3 million.

Many people who are not boating or swimming are just staying indoors.

Josh Acton has no air conditioning, but he finally bought four fans after
it got so hot in his house that candles melted.

About 2,000 inmates living in a barbed-wire-surrounded tent encampment at
the Maricopa County Jail have been given permission to strip down to their
government-issued pink boxer shorts.

On Wednesday, hundreds of men wearing boxers were either curled up on their
bunk beds or chatted in the tents, which reached 138 degrees inside the
week before. Many were also swathed in wet, pink towels as sweat collected
on their chests and dripped down to their pink socks.

"It feels like you are in a furnace," said James Zanzo't, an inmate who has
lived in the tents for 1 1/2 years. "It's inhumane."

Joe Arpaio, the tough-guy sheriff who created the tent city and long ago
started making his prisoners wear pink, is not sympathetic. He said
Wednesday that he told the inmates: "It's 120 degrees in Iraq and the
soldiers are living in tents and they didn't commit any crimes, so shut
your mouths."

Sherman Reeves, a postal worker, set up a misting system — similar to the
ones in the produce sections of grocery stores — in his delivery truck,
which he said heats up like an oven. "You can feel yourself baking," he said.

John Augustyn switches the temperature reading on his office computer to
Celsius. "It's all a matter of being able to adjust your mind," he said.

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