Mercury Drops, Heat Dangers Remain

By: Daniel Armbruster Email
By: Daniel Armbruster Email

Local doctors and paramedics say they're still seeing cases of heat exhaustion even in the milder weather. That's because temperature isn't the only factor. High humidity mixed with the heat can lead to deadly conditions outside.

On a gorgeous Friday afternoon, under a clear blue sky, it might be hard to imagine that conditions could be downright dangerous. This summer temperatures have been fairly mild compared to recent years, but Bryan Fire Department is still getting emergency calls related to the heat.

"Our calls do increase with it., said Trevor LaRoche with Bryan Fire Department, "With the rain there's a lot of humidity."

According to Dr. Clint Chi Cheng, M.D. with St. Joseph Family Medicine, humidity increases the dangers of the heat.

"When it's humid one of the main mechanisms when your body cools off is by sweating and if the humidity is over 70% that mechanism is decreased," said Cheng.

Those most at risk include people who work outside, young children and the elderly.

"Kids don't sweat as easily as adults.The elderly are taking more medications and are not able to compensate as well," said Cheng.

Everyone is at risk though.Especially those who aren't use to the muggy heat in Texas. Like a 15 year old boy who suffered heat stroke this week in Sam Houston National Forest.

"It progressed from simple heat exhaustion to more of a heat stroke and a true life threatening emergency," said Jimmy Williams with New Waverly Volunteer Fire Department.

The teen did survive, but remains in serious condition.

"A lot of times they don't notice it until it's too late," said LaRoche.

An emergency that can strike with hardly any warning and in a matter of seconds, turn deadly.

In order to stay safe in this heat, drink lots of water. If you're consuming caffeinated or alcoholic beverages which dehydrate the body, be sure to also drink extra water

-Avoid the outdoors during the heat of the day.

-Stay inside where it's air conditioned whenever possible.

-Also, dress for the heat by wearing lightweight and light-colored clothing.

-Never leave a person or pet in a parked car where temperatures heat up in seconds.

-And if you start feeling overheated, immediately get out of the heat.

KBTX-TV Channel 3 4141 E. 29th Street Bryan, TX 77802 Phone: (979) 846-7777 Fax: (979) 846-1490 News Fax: (979) 846-1888
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