Closings: Schools, churches, day-cares and businesses

Extreme heat to blame for woman’s death, road problems

ST. LOUIS COUNTY, Mo. - A woman in south St. Louis County lost her life Tuesday to the brutal heatwave. Officials have not yet released the woman’s name. She was 70 years old.

The incident happened in the 10000 block of Mueller Road. The woman’s air conditioner had broken. She called a company to repair her air conditioner on June 13.

She was found dead in her home the next day, the same day the air conditioner repair crew was due to arrive. It has neighbors thinking about what they would do if they lost cooling in this intense heat.

“We’d go stay with our daughter or son if we didn’t have air conditioning,” said Sylvia Rensch.

Roads were also damaged by the searing weather. On Laclede Station Road, a water main break created a big problem. When it gets hot, the ground shifts, causing a pipe to burst. In this case, the part of the road dropped and part of it jumped higher.

“The water just bubbling up and bubbling up and pretty soon it was running down the street and all of the sudden the street started caving in,” said Marilyn Newner, who lives nearby.

Crews rushed to the scene to begin repairs and shut off the water.

“When we heard we weren’t going to have water all day, we hurried up and filled up coolers and coolers,” Newner said.

If you think it feels like an oven outside, the folks at Jones & Lockhart Welding actually work in an oven, where hot sparks fly as they weld metal together.

“You get used to it for the most part,” said employee Chris Ludwig. “I mean when you do it every day for 15 plus years.”

Workers also heat up metal in an oven that’s as big as a backyard swimming pool and can warm to 1,600 degrees. When it cools down to just above 100 degrees, a worker goes inside the oven to remove the product.

“Drink plenty of fluids, we have some fans,” said plant manager Gary Grizzle.