Record-hot summer?

Temperatures are heading back into the 90s this week, and the heat index could hit 100 on Thursday, and, yes, it should feel all too familiar.

June and July, with an average temperature of 80.0, constituted the second-warmest such period since official record-keeping began in Philadelphia in 1874. The average daily high in July was 90.9, the fourth-highest ever.

And it appears that the meteorological summer of 2010 -- defined as the June 1-Aug. 31 period -- is on its way to becoming the warmest on record.

The standing record is 78.6, set in 1995, and that is well within reach, even though August typically is a few degrees cooler than July. On Aug. 9, the daily average temperatures start their long, slow descent toward winter.

Should this turn out to be a "normal" August, with an average temperature of 76.3, the summer of 2010 would become the new champ. In fact, if August 2010 finishes at 75.6 or higher, that would be enough to beat the 1995 record.