Many Pennsylvanians are facing dangerously high temperatures and sweltering humidity, and those conditions persist for the weekend ahead.
By Sunday, according to AccuWeather, some 160 million Americans could experience conditions that make the temperature feel like 100 degrees or more.
AccuWeather forecasters said that would include Philadelphia, much of southeastern Pennsylvania and major cities along the I-95 corridor.
That’s apparently not too bad for Indiana, where highs are forecast at 86 today, 89 Saturday and 91 Sunday, but AccuWeather said RealFeel conditions will likely hit 92, 95 and 98, respectively, over the course of of those three days.
By comparison, Pittsburgh is expected to have highs of 90 today, 91 Saturday and 93 Sunday, and RealFeel conditions likely to hit 94 today, 96 Saturday and 95 Sunday.
With all of this in mind, the American Red Cross of Greater Pennsylvania offers steps that can be taken to stay safe.
The Red Cross has said some people are at higher risk of developing heat-related illness, including adults 65 and older, people with chronic conditions, people who work outdoors, infants and children and athletes.
The Red Cross said some may be taking medication that worsens the effects of searing heat. People with heart disease, poor blood circulation, obesity and mental illness are at risk of getting sick if temperatures rise.
He offers these safety tips:
• Hot cars can be deadly. Never leave children or pets in a vehicle. The car’s interior temperature can quickly reach 120 degrees.
• Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids. Avoid beverages containing caffeine or alcohol.
• Supervise family, friends and neighbors who do not have air conditioning, who spend most of their time alone or who are more likely to be affected by heat.
• Those without air conditioning should seek relief from the heat during the hottest part of the day in places like schools, libraries, theaters, malls, etc.
• Avoid extreme temperature changes.
• Wear loose, lightweight, light-coloured clothing. Avoid dark colors as they absorb the sun’s rays.
• Slow down, stay indoors and avoid strenuous exercise during the hottest part of the day.
• Postpone outdoor games and activities.
• Use a buddy system when working in excessive heat. Take frequent breaks when working outdoors.
• Check animals frequently to make sure they are not suffering from the heat. Make sure they have plenty of fresh water and shade.
Excessive heat can lead to sunburn, heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
If someone experiences heat cramps in their legs or abdomen, the Red Cross urges that they be taken to a cooler place where they can rest, stretch the affected muscle slightly and replenish their fluids with half a glass (about four ounces) of cold water every 15 minutes.
If someone is showing signs of heat exhaustion (cold, clammy, pale or flushed skin, profuse sweating, headache, nausea, dizziness, weakness and exhaustion), they should be moved to a cooler place, removing or loosening tight clothing, and the person has water sprayed or given cool, damp cloths or towels to apply to the skin.
Also, the Red Cross urges to ventilate the person. If conscious, have him drink small amounts of cool water. Make sure the person drinks slowly.
Watch for changes in the person’s condition. If he refuses to drink, vomits or begins to pass out, call 911.