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Maryland hiker dies as big heat grips East Coast

ROCKVILLE, Md. — A woman who lost consciousness while hiking in Montgomery County, Maryland, has died.

The Washington Post reports that the death on Saturday is the first potential heat-related fatality reported this weekend by Washington-region officials.

Temperatures were 97 degrees in the Washington area, but some areas felt as hot as 115 degrees with humidity.

Montgomery County Fire and Rescue Services and U.S. Park Service officials responded to emergency calls from the Billy Goat Trail just before 2 p.m. Saturday on a strenuous section of the hike. They say the woman, who has not been publicly identified, was unconscious, and other hikers were trying to help her.

She was taken by helicopter to Suburban Hospital in Bethesda, where she later died.

More heat, humidity for East Coast

The East Coast on Sunday sweated through another day of extreme heat and humidity as organizers in Boston canceled a benefit run, Delaware Civil War re-enactors got the day off and the New York Police Department implored residents to take it easy.

“Sunday has been canceled,” the NYPD jokingly tweeted . “Stay indoors, nothing to see here. Really, we got this.”

The central part of the country, meanwhile, enjoyed some relief as a cold front moved steadily southward and eastward across the country, bringing down the temperatures. But the cooler weather settling in Monday and Tuesday is also bringing severe storms packed with powerful winds and heavy rains that have already caused damage in the Midwest.

From the Carolinas to Maine, daytime highs reached the upper 90s Sunday. Coupled with high humidity, temperatures felt as hot as 110 degrees Fahrenheit in places.

In New York City, where all eyes were on the power grid even before the hot weather following a Manhattan blackout last weekend, electricity company Con Ed reported roughly 46,000 customers were without power as of 9 p.m. Sunday because of scattered outages, the vast majority in the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens.

In Boston, Sunday’s heat prompted cancellation of the annual Jimmy Fund 5K cancer benefit race as well as a popular Sunday market in the city’s South End. City officials also once again opened up city pools free to residents as the temperature topped 90 degrees for the third consecutive day.

In Pennsylvania, nine firefighters were treated for heat exhaustion and six transported to a hospital for treatment while fighting a house fire in sweltering conditions Saturday.

In New Hampshire, rescue crews helped a 29-year-old hiker late Saturday after he was overcome by the heat in the White Mountain National Forest.

The heat even prompted Delaware officials to close Fort Delaware State Park, which served as a Union prison camp during the Civil War. Temperatures were simply too high for costumed interpreters who wear wool garb to work safely this weekend, officials said.

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