By JEFFREY COLLINS
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - The summer heat has started a little earlier than usual this year in the Carolinas.
The biggest cities in South Carolina and North Carolina are again on track to break long-term heat records.
The hot, dry start to summer also has worsened the drought creeping across both states and caused wildfires with thick plumes of smoke.
The high in Columbia has been 90 degrees or above every day so far in June. The city has never recorded a June without at least one day where the high stayed in the 80s.
The highs at the Raleigh-Durham airport have been 90 or above on 25 days already this year as of Friday. That's the same pace as 2010, when the record of 91 days at 90-plus in a year was set.