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Summer Heat Wave Safety

Temperatures have been scorching hot over the last few weeks. Although recent rain showers helped to cool things off a bit, the heat will stay for a little while longer. It is important to be aware and pay attention to weather alerts regarding the hot temperature. In recent years, excessive heat has caused more deaths than all other weather events, including floods. Temperatures in the 90s can produce a heat index reaching up to 105 to 110 degrees. The heat index measures how hot it feels when humidity is factored in with hot air making 90-94 degrees feel like 105 degrees or higher.
During summer months weather officials issue “Weather Alerts” like Excessive Heat Watch, Heat Advisory and Excessive Heat Warning in reporting the forecast. Excessive Heat Watch means that conditions are favorable for an excessive heat event for the next 24 to 72 hours. Heat Advisory Alert means the Heat Index values are forecasting to reach daytime highs of 100-105 degrees over the next 1 to 2 days and Excessive Heat Warning means the Heat Index may reach daytime highs of 105-110 degrees for at least 2 days or more. Be advised that the heat index peak during mid-morning to late afternoon then drops in the evening. Try to avoid being outdoors during peak times.
The National Weather Service has issued Excessive Heat Warnings for large parts of the South Eastern United States. Weather officials across the state are warning people that when the heat index is high, heat and humidity will increase the risk for heat exhaustion and even heat stroke if precautionary measures are not taken.
Here are some safety tips and tricks to beat the summer heat wave. Stay hydrated and eat well-balanced, light and regular meals. Stay inside in the air conditioning or shade, even when working or playing outside. Many public places, such as libraries, shopping malls, and movie theaters, are air conditioned. Never leave anyone especially children or pets in a car this time of year. Car temperature can quickly reach 160 or 190 degrees within minutes. Check on elderly and those without air conditioning and make sure they at least have a fan and plenty of fluid to stay cool. Avoid excess alcoholic drinks, alcohol can impair the body’s ability to regulate its temperature.
Recognize the signs of heat exhaustion like pale skin, muscle cramps, feeling tired and weak, feeling confused or disorientation, headache, fainting, nausea or vomiting, and excessive sweating. If you recognize any of these signs get the person out of the sun and into a cool area, apply water to the skin and ice to the neck or armpits, where large blood vessels are close to the surface to help the person cool off faster. In server cases, immerse the body in cool water, either at a swimming pool or in a bathtub and call 911.

Cokeitha Gaddist (54 Posts)