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EMSA: “Heat Alert” will remain in place until temps significantly drop

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OKLAHOMA CITY - A "heat alert" that was issued Thursday will remain in place until temperatures significantly drop, an EMSA official said.

Thursday evening, EMSA officials issued the first “HEAT ALERT” of Summer 2017. 

With rising temperatures and humidity, seven  patients called 911 complaining of symptoms related to the heat.

EMSA officials believe the combined heat and humidity is having an impact on public health prompting EMSA to issue a ‘HEAT ALERT’.

The public is being urged to take extra precautions.

Patients who called 911 complaining of symptoms related to the heat range in age from 21 to 71 years old.

Tuesday, EMSA treated four patients suffering from heat illnesses.  Those patients ranged in age from 17 to 71.

  • 50-year-old male, outdoors too long.
  • 17-year-old male, outside suffered heat exhaustion.
  • 71-year-old male, dehydrated walking outdoors.
  • 50-year-old female, who stated she was homeless, suffered heat illness.

A “Heat Alert is issued when EMSA dispatchers receive five (5) heat related emergency calls in a 24-hour period and the heat is expected to continue.

This medical “HEAT ALERT’ will remain in place until the temperatures drop dramatically.

Heat exhaustion is a milder form of heat-related illness that can develop after several days of exposure to high temperatures and inadequate or unbalanced replacement of fluids.

It is the body's response to an excessive loss of the water and salt contained in sweat.

Those most prone to heat exhaustion are elderly people, people with high blood pressure, and people working or exercising in a hot environment.

Warning signs of Heat Exhaustion:

  • Heavy sweating
  • Paleness
  • Muscle cramps
  • Tiredness
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fainting

Remember to keep cool and use common sense:

  • Avoid hot foods and heavy meals—they add heat to your body.
  • Drink plenty of fluids and replace salts and minerals in your body. Do not take salt tablets unless under medical supervision.
  • Dress infants and children in cool, loose clothing and shade their heads and faces with hats or an umbrella.
  • Limit sun exposure during mid-day hours and in places of potential severe exposure such as beaches.
  • Do not leave infants, children, or pets in a parked car.
  • Provide plenty of fresh water for your pets, and leave the water in a shady area.
  • Otherwise, help the victim to cool off, CALL 911 if symptoms worsen or last longer than one (1) hour.

Heat-related deaths and illness are preventable yet annually many people succumb to extreme heat.