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Experts: High humidity setting this summer apart from the past

NORMAN, Okla. - Tuesday was tapped to be the hottest day so far this summer.

With much of our state under a heat alert, some reports are saying this summer will stand out compared to those passed - citing an "off the chart" heat index, spanning many days.

We wanted to see what, if anything, sets this summer apart.

You often hear people say it's not the heat, it's the humidity that will get you and with all the rain we've had this year, it's definitely not helping out.

"That's really gathered a lot of humidity in the soil, vegetation and right now, we're starting to dry out so the temperature is starting to dry now," said Ryan Barnes, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Norman.

Barnes says what makes this summer different than some in the past is the amount of rainfall we had. Temperatures were slow to rise and with them reaching a peak this week along with Gulf moisture, we need to be careful.

"It will kind of shock your body so you need to stay well aware of that," he said.

One big factor is the heat index - or the combination of the temperature and the humidity.

"So basically it's kind of like a skin temperature," said Barnes.

The scale can go as high as you want to calculate it.

So, is this summer's heat index historic or different in any way?

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