Stay safe during these steamy July days

Published: Jul. 18, 2019 at 8:20 AM CDT
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July is doing what July does. We're facing another round of dangerously hot weather as we push through our Thursday.

High temps in the forecast

calls for a mostly sunny and hot afternoon with highs topping out in the upper-90s near 100°. Due to the high humidity, heat indices could rise up near 112° or even 115° in some spots. Breezy southerly winds will blow 10-20 mph with gusts up to 30 mph.

Effects on the body

Ease up on the outdoor activities and stay hydrated. The steam poses a threat of heat-related illnesses. Children and the elderly are particularly at risk in these conditions.

Both air temperature and humidity affect the body’s ability to cool itself during hot weather. Heat stress occurs when sweating isn’t enough to cool the body, causing a person’s body temperature to rise rapidly. Heat stress symptoms include clammy, sweaty skin; light-headedness; weakness; and nausea. Heat-related illnesses include sunburn, heat exhaustion, and heatstroke — and the most severe form requires immediate medical attention.

Be careful out there!

Hot weather precautions include the following:
  • Drink plenty of non-alcoholic, non-caffeinated fluids, especially during physical activity.
  • Avoid heavy meals and hot foods, which add heat to your body.
  • Monitor infants for fluid intake, and dress them in cool, loose-fitting clothing.
  • Check on relatives, neighbors and friends who may be at risk.
  • Never leave children or pets in parked cars. Even with the windows open, temperatures can reach 130 degrees in only a few minutes. Place your cell phone, purse or left shoe in the backseat as a reminder that you have a child in the car.
  • Make sure pets and livestock that live outdoors have plenty of fresh, cool water and shade. Pets should be brought indoors if possible.

What to wear

Those who do need to be outside are advised to wear loose-fitting, light-colored clothing, sunglasses, sunscreen (SPF of 30 or more) and a hat.

What to do (or NOT do)

Extreme heat can be a concern to healthy people as well, including children participating in outdoor activities such as summer camps and athletic events and practices.
    Plan activities to avoid being outside between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Rest frequently in shaded areas and stay hydrated.
  • Stop activity and get into a cool area if you become lightheaded, confused, weak, or faint.

There's an app for that

The CDC has a link for a Heat Safety Tool, available for iOS and Android, that helps users understand the heat-index as it's happening.

Heat Safety Tool App

Heat app

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