(INDEPENDENCE, Mo.) Monday, July 21, 2014 – The National Weather Service has issued a Heat Advisory for several counties in Missouri, including Jackson County, which remains in effect from noon today until 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 22. Today the heat index will be in the 97-105°F range. Tuesday the range will be 102-107°. Since we have been enjoying cooler than normal weather, many people may not be acclimated to the heat.
Because heat and humidity can combine to pose substantial health risks, the Independence Health Department advises residents to take extra precautions to prevent heat-related illnesses and deaths. Summer heat can take its toll on a person's health, especially the very young, the elderly and the chronically ill.
Excessive heat can also impact pets. Never leave a cat or dog unattended in a car. Limit the time your cat or dog spends outside, especially between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. and make sure they have access to a shaded area and plenty of cold water.
“People need to be aware that exposure to high temperatures and humidity can be very dangerous, especially for older residents,” Jones said. “The hot weather health advisory means that weather conditions may cause heat-related illness and death during this time and necessary precautions should be taken.”
To Prevent Heat-Related Illness: • Be aware of the warning signs of heat-related illness such as light-headedness, mild nausea or confusion, sleepiness or profuse sweating. • Increase your fluid intake; drink more than your thirst indicates. • Wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. • Spend time in an air-conditioned place; if not at home, then such public places as libraries, supermarkets, shopping malls, movie theaters or other air-conditioned location. • Do not rely on fans as your primary cooling device during a heat wave. • Schedule outdoor activities carefully, preferably before noon or in the evening. • Monitor those at high risk such as the elderly, infants and children up to 4 years of age, someone who is overweight or on medication. • Do not leave infants, children or pets unattended in a parked car or other hot environment.
For general information on heat signs and symptoms, call the Health Department at (816) 325-7185. For heat information and community resources, call the Independence Health Department’s community partner United Way 211 line, at 2-1-1 or (816) 474-5112.
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