With temperatures in the South Bay expected to be in the 90°s Fahrenheit this weekend, there is a heightened risk of fire and heat-related illnesses, especially for those more vulnerable such as children, the elderly, homeless, people working outdoors, and pets without adequate shelter.
The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued an Excessive Heat Warning in effect from 1pm Friday to 8pm Sunday.
How can you protect yourself and loved ones during this time?
- Drink plenty of water
- NEVER leave people or pets alone in enclosed vehicles, even for a short period of time
- Wear light-colored and lightweight or loose fitting clothing
- Stay out of the midday sun and when possible reschedule strenuous activities to early morning or evening
- Check on neighbors and the elderly
- Provide shade and water for livestock and pets
- Take extra precautions if you work or spend time outside and schedule frequent rest breaks in shaded or air conditioned environments
- Know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heatstroke
The most common signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion include:
- Dark-colored urine (a sign of dehydration)
- Muscle or abdominal cramps
- Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
- Pale skin
- Profuse sweating
- Rapid heartbeat
Although heat exhaustion isn’t as serious as heat stroke, it isn’t something to be taken lightly. Without proper intervention, heat exhaustion can progress to heatstroke, which can damage the brain and other vital organs, and even cause death.
Heatstroke symptoms include:
- High body temperature. A body temperature of 104° F or higher is the main sign of heatstroke
- Throbbing headache
- Dizziness and light-headedness
- Altered mental state or behavior such as confusion, disorientation, or staggering
- Lack of sweating despite the heat
- Red, hot, and dry skin
- Muscle weakness or cramps
- Nausea and vomiting
- Flushed skin
- Rapid heartbeat, which may be either strong or weak
- Rapid, shallow breathing
Anyone overcome by heat should be moved to a cool and shaded location. Heatstroke is an emergency – call 911.