As the heat wave that has kept much of the nation in its grip moved east, South Carolina baked Friday under white, hazy skies as temperatures soared and the humidity make it feel even hotter.
Heat warnings and advisories were issued for the entire state with the exception of the mountains. Forecasters said the combination of heat and humidity could make it feel as hot as 115 degrees in some places.
By early Friday afternoon, it was already more than 100 degrees in Columbia, Darlington and Sumter while in Charleston it was 98. Greenville was a comparatively mild 93.
Heat advisories are continuing across much of the state today, from noon to 8 p.m., according to the National Weather Service in Columbia. Columbia area highs are expected to be around 100 degrees, but the combined heat and humidity will make it feel up to 108 degrees in the afternoon.
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Meanwhile, the heat and dry conditions prompted the S.C. Forestry Commission to issue a Red Flag Alert, which went into at 6 p.m. Friday, for all but three counties.
In those three counties — Georgetown, Horry and Marion — outdoor burning is banned. In all other counties, officials encourage residents to avoid outdoor burning, though it is not banned.
And the Lexington County Fire chief has issued a ban on general debris burning for the unincorporated areas of the county until further notice. The ban includes all outdoor burning with the exception of fires related to forestry, wildlife and agriculture burns and fires for cooking of food for immediate consumption.