It’s hot, hot, hot

Published 10:11 pm Monday, July 15, 2019

The heat index is predicted to get up to possibly 110 this weekend, and the days between then and now won’t be much better.

They say it will probably be the hottest week of the year, and Suffolk residents are going to feel it, both on their skin now and on their electric bills later.

That means it’s a good time to get a reminder about some of the most critical safety information for extreme heat.

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First of all — this really goes for any time of year, but especially now — never leave children, pets or the elderly in your vehicle for any length of time, even if you think you’ll only be a minute. There’s always some delay in the store, and even a minute or two is enough to cause severe distress in this kind of heat.

The second thing is that everyone should be aware of the symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Here they are, from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

Symptoms of heat exhaustion include heavy sweating; cold, pale and clammy skin; rapid, weak pulse; nausea or vomiting; muscle cramps; tiredness or weakness; dizziness; headache; and fainting. Anyone experiencing these symptoms should immediately move to a cool place, like inside; loosen their clothes; put cool, wet cloths on their body or take a cool bath; and sip water. They should get medical help right away if they are throwing up, their symptoms get worse or the symptoms last longer than one hour.

Conversely, some of the symptoms of heat stroke are the opposite, and heat stroke is a much more severe condition.

Symptoms of heat stroke include a body temperature of 103 or above; hot, red, dry or damp skin; rapid, strong pulse; headache; dizziness; nausea; confusion; and fainting.

If a person is suffering heat stroke, call 911 immediately. Heat stroke is a medical emergency. You should also move the person to a cooler place, help lower their temperature with cool cloths or a cool bath, and do not give them anything to drink.

We urge everyone that does not absolutely have to be outside to stay inside this week. Those who must be outside should do their activities during the early morning and early evening, if possible. Everyone should stay well hydrated with water and electrolyte drinks.

Stay cool!