Raleigh, N.C. — As the sun continues to scorch North Carolina, the three-man crew from Triangle Moving Services works as quickly as they can to get in out of the heat.
The crew – brothers Eric and Judge Bobbitt and Antwan Burton – lugged furniture and boxes from a home on Cicero Drive in Raleigh Friday morning and were prepared to move their customer to a second-story apartment in Apex during the afternoon.
The men say they usually start their workday at 7:30 a.m. and put in 10 to 12 hours before calling it quits. They take few breaks because that just means a longer day.
The heat like the Triangle has seen in recent days makes the work more difficult, Judge Bobbitt said.
"You wake up in the morning, and it's like, before we even get to the job, your clothes are already sticking to you," he said. "Once you get out here and get to moving, you know, there's nothing you can do. It's just sweat, sweat, sweat."
Progress Energy officials said that area customers set a peak electricity demand record Thursday, using 12.7 million kilowatt-hours of electricity between 4 and 5 p.m. That broke the record of 12.6 million kilowatt-hours, which was set Aug. 9, 2007.
The moving crew might catch a break next week, as cooler, drier air should move in behind a front that crosses North Carolina late Friday, WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said.
But they still have to endure Friday.
The temperature in downtown Raleigh at WRAL Studios reached 100 degrees, and the heat index indicated it felt like 112. Raleigh-Durham International Airport registered a high of 99 degrees and a heat index of 106.
A heat advisory was issued for most of eastern North Carolina, including Wake County. Dew-points in the 70s made it feel like 105 to 110 across the region.
Several coastal counties were under an extreme heat warning, where it was expected to feel like 110 to 115 degrees.
"It's definitely a day you just want to take it easy and stay inside," Gardner said.
Storms, cooler air on the way
The cold front is packing storms and high winds that caused widespread damage across the Northeast on Thursday, she said. All of North Carolina is under an elevated risk for severe thunderstorms from the front, and counties across central North Carolina were under a severe thunderstorm watch until 10 p.m.
WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said cooler surface temperatures in the evening could moderate the severity of any storms.
The front will park itself over the state this weekend, which could lead to another round of storms on Saturday.
High temperatures were expected to reach 97 degrees on Saturday and 95 on Sunday, before backing off to the low 90s early next week. Fishel said the chances for rain increase on Monday and Tuesday.
If the Triangle tops 90 degrees every day through Tuesday, it would mean 26 days in July of 90 or higher, which Fishel said would set a new record for the area.
August starts off on the same note, with highs in the low 90s through next Friday.
"A few degrees (in) temperature really doesn't make a difference out here. If it's 90 degrees, it might as well be 100 to us. It's hot," Judge Bobbitt said. "We just try to get it done and get it over with."