Break from hot, dangerous weather almost here

Published 12:00 am Thursday, August 9, 2001

Forecasters predict less stifling heat by this weekend.

Thursday, August 09, 2001

Forecasters predict less stifling heat by this weekend.

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But, for those who still must suffer through 90-degree days, it’s important to keep a cool head when fending off heat-related illness.

King’s Daughters Medical Center and Our Lady of Bellefonte Hospital emergency room directors report the best way to prevent illness is to plan ahead – wear light colored clothing, drink lots of fluids, take breaks and stay in the shade as much as possible.

Neither hospital reported Wednesday that ER physicians had not seen a rise in heat-related illness cases.

Another hot and muggy day is on tap for today, but relief is on the way, the National Weather Service said.

An approaching frontal system will bring a 30 percent chance of scattered showers and thunderstorms tonight, with lows in the lower 70s.

Cooler temperatures will follow in its wake, but highs are still expected in the 80s by Friday, forecasters said. Relative humidities could be lower, too.

The more pleasant conditions should extend through the weekend and into early next week, the weather service said.

Saturday’s weather calls for decreasing clouds, with lows in the upper 60s and high in the mid 80s. Sunday, dry, low in the lower 60s and high in the mid 80s.

Physicians still warn that in times of high heat, take it easy and check on the elderly and the sick who are more vulnerable.

"First of all, try not to work outdoors," said Dr. Drema Hunt of OLBH’s Cannonsburg, Ky., Outreach Center. "If you’re not fortunate enough to work indoors, then use common sense wear light cottons, take frequent breaks and drink lots of fluids."

Even the evening or morning before work, drink lots of water, Dr. Hunt added.

If you start getting muscle spasms, sick to your stomach, heart racing or dizzy, rest and see if the symptoms go away; if they do not, then seek help, Dr. Hunt said.

Other danger signs that warrant medical attention include high body temperature, slurred speech and weakness in the extremities, ER physicians said.