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Locals try to survive hottest day of the year

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ARLINGTON, Va. (WJLA) - Wednesday is definitely not a day you want to spend extra time outdoors. The day will be especially tough for those with no working air conditioning indoors.

Summer's first heat wave

National Mall crowded despite heat

A water vendor pours cold water on himself to try and cool off from the intense heat. (WJLA)

With no wind to speak of and shade at a premium, the day's heat is oppressive and unforgiving.

"I'm trying to stay inside," said Virginia resident Levida Hardy. "It's hard to breathe [in this heat]."

The D.C.-area heat wave is forcing residents everywhere to frantically have their air conditioning units repaired and replaced.

"Maintenance is very important," says technician Edwin Aparicio.

Local heating and cooling company, Michael & Son Services is literally taking calls and visiting customers' homes 24 hours a day, they said.

As of noon on Wednesday, the company had already received more than 160 calls - that's more than double a normal weekday workload.

"It's been totally busy," he said. "Especially in this heat, when it's 95 degrees, and [your home has] no A/C."

And imagine having to work outdoors today. For some movers, they don't have to imagine, as they are forced to take more breaks to wipe their brows.

"I'm just making sure to drink plenty of water," said mover Maurice Helder, who is unloading moving trucks in Virginia today. "[It's making us] fatigued, but we're gonna do the best we can do."

Meanwhile at the National Zoo, the tourist attraction was still busy with big crowds turning up on the hottest day of the year. The heat was even visible as it rose from the tracks, and CSX and MARC transit had to slow down their trains, which caused some minor delays throughout the afternoon.

Despite the heat wave, we also found plenty of people cycling and running at the national mall.

“I’ll take the heat every day and twice on Sunday – I hate the cold weather, I hate the winter…” said jogger Roverto Iraola.

As the temperature rises, kids at home run baseball camp are not allowed to stay out in it for too long, taking frequent breaks throughout the day in the shake and going down a giant slip-and-slide to cool off.

“This is particularly early, but this is pretty standard for this area in the middle of August so it’s something we're used to – It's just a little earlier in the year,” said assistant director of the camp, Dan Thorner.

These temperatures can be dangerous – especially for the very young and the elderly. And for those who choose to brave the heat and exercise anyway, doctors say to make sure to drink plenty of fluids and take frequent breaks.

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