CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – The heat isn’t just uncomfortable; it’s dangerous as well.
The heat can cause issues for anyone, but the elderly and children are the people most at risk when the mercury climbs.
“Particularly young children, infants and such, as well as old folks, and it tends to hit our older folks harder and faster and puts them down longer because as we get older, our body has less ability to regulate its temperature,” Jonathan Evans, Field Paramedic with Kanawha County Ambulance Authority said.
Certain medications and conditions can also cause people to be more prone to heat-related illnesses.
“You have people that have conditions like COPD and having this very hot air and the humidity makes it very hard for them to catch their breath and being out in this weather having to do any type of exertions just really saps their strength,” Evans said.
Over the past few days, the Kanawha County Ambulance Authority has been extremely busy responding to heat-related calls in addition to COVID-19, leaving them with one truck available throughout the day.
“Yesterday we were spending most of the day occupied on calls. I talked to crews yesterday evening and they said they spent most of the day on the move,” Evans said.
Experts advise people to hydrate throughout the day but with the right kind of liquids.
“Things that don’t have a lot of caffeine in them, you want to avoid your coffees. You want to avoid a lot of your energy drinks, things that are diuretics and make you have to go to the bathroom and produce more urine which is going to pull more fluids out of your body,” Evans said.
Experts advise people to plan their day accordingly and get things done early in the morning or later in the evening when the sun has gone down for less heat stress.
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