The National Weather Service has issued an Excessive Heat Watch that goes into effect Friday at noon and continues until Saturday evening for most West Michigan counties. Air temperatures Friday and Saturday are expected to be in the low to mid 90s, but the Heat Index both days is expected to reach 100 to 105. There won’t be much relief in the evening and overnight hours those days either with lows only dropping to the low to mid 70s.

Heat illnesses could develop for those spending prolonged time outdoors or in non-air conditioned buildings. It’s advised to not spend extended periods outside, especially young children and the elderly. Drink plenty of fluids when outdoors and try to stay out of the sun. Spending as much time as possible in an air-conditioned room is also recommended.

This is the first Excessive Heat Watch to be issued in West Michigan since a record setting heat wave back in July of 2012 when temps across much of the region hit the low to mid 100s breaking several records. The heat during that stretch reached levels not seen in the region since the Dust Bowl era of the 1930s. This heat wave will be much shorter and temperatures are not expected to be quite as warm. Some parts of northern Michigan may see temps at or above 100 though.

Counties under the Excessive Heat Watch include: Allegan, Barry, Branch, Calhoun, Cass, Eaton, Hillsadle, Jackson, Kalamazoo, Kent, Muskegon, Montcalm, Ottawa, St. Joseph and Van Buren.