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It’s official: Fourth heat wave of summer hits Mass.

A jogger runs past a display outside Boston's Franklin Park Zoo on a hot and humid day.Barry Chin/Globe Staff

Boston recorded 91 degrees around 11 a.m. Thursday, marking the third consecutive day when temperatures reached at least 90 degrees, the standard for determining a heat wave, the National Weather Service said.

“It’s official,” said meteorologist Frank Nocera. “It’s a heat wave.”

Boston won’t be alone in reaching a milestone many in the region would prefer never to achieve, he said.

“It’s quite possible that there will be many other places today [that will record heat waves] once you get away from the sea coast,” Nocera said in a Globe telephone interview.

Many inland communities along Route 128 and farther west will also hit the 90s, and that will generate heat indexes into the triple digits by day’s end, he said.

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“There’s a little relief near the coast, but not too much,’' Nocera said.

It’s the fourth heat wave this summer for Massachusetts.

A heat advisory and air-quality warning are in effect until Thursday evening in most of both Massachusetts and Rhode Island. In Rhode Island, the heat advisory is in effect for northern and central part of the state.

“Hot and humid weather persists today, and humidity lingers Friday,” forecasters wrote. “Expect isolated to scattered showers and thunderstorms this afternoon and Friday.”

The heat advisory is in effect until 8 p.m. Thursday.

“Take extra precautions if you work or spend time outside. When possible reschedule strenuous activities to early morning or evening,” forecasters caution. “Drink plenty of fluids, stay in an air-conditioned room, stay out of the sun, and check up on relatives and neighbors.”

Air quality alerts have also been issued for coastal communities in both states.

“Southeastern portions of the state, along with the Cape and the Islands will experience Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups levels for ozone,” according to the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.

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A similar concern over ozone levels led to the air quality alert issued by the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management.

In Massachusetts, Friday will be a transitional day with temperatures peaking in the 80s but still humid. The weekend promises to be cloudy but with temperatures in the 70s, the weather service said.

One other weather note: September is not always without a blast of heat. In both 1895 and 1914, Boston endured an official heat wave between Sept. 21 and Sept. 23. Providence? In 2015, between Sept. 7 and Sept. 9.



John R. Ellement can be reached at john.ellement@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @JREbosglobe.