'Heat Dome' Envelops Midwest

Nati Harnik / AP Photo

Nick McAtee, concrete finisher for the city of Omaha, wipes sweat off his face in Omaha, Neb., Monday, July 18, 2011. A heat wave is smothering the Midwest with a heat index well over 100 in most places. Cooling centers are opening, and farmers are scrambling to prevent more livestock deaths.

The "heat dome" that's hovering over the Midwest is taking its toll on residents and the environment, and the slow-moving wave isn't going to let up anytime soon. Forecasters predict triple-digit temperatures to last through the week, though the wave is expected to begin wafting east by Wednesday. From Texas to Michigan, officials have issued excessive-heat warnings. Some cities have opened cooling centers to provide relief for those whose homes don't have air conditioning. Police said the heat may be to blame for the death of a 55-year-old man in Springfield, Missouri, who was living at a homeless camp. Even wild animals aren't fit for such conditions: The Texas AgriLife Extension Service said pregnant does are miscarrying and many other fawns are being born prematurely.