State Senator Mike Nozzolio is urging residents of the Greater Finger Lakes Region to check frequently on senior citizens and those who live alone, as well as to take extra care with children and family pets, to protect them from soaring temperatures as New York is experiencing one of the worst heat waves in years.
The National Weather Service has issued Excessive Heat Watch alerts for much of New York State through Thursday, as temperatures soar and remain in the 90s. Heat is the number one weather-related cause of death in the United States, claiming more lives each year than floods, lightning, tornadoes and hurricanes combined.
“High heat and humidity can cause more than just discomfort -- it can cause serious physical harm, especially to our senior citizens, infants and small children, pets and others. If you suspect that someone you know is suffering from any of the signs of heat stress, it is important to get medical attention right away,” said Senator Nozzolio.
Senator Nozzolio said neighbors and family members should call on the elderly at least once a day, and consider taking vulnerable individuals for relief to places with air conditioning, such as stores, public libraries, museums and movie theaters, among others. Pets should be given adequate shade, food and water, and exercise should be limited.
Senator Nozzolio also urged New Yorkers to be aware of the signs of heat-related illness, and call for emergency assistance for people displaying the effects of overheating, including hot, red and dry skin; rapid or weak pulse, shallow breathing, dizziness, nausea, headache and exhaustion.
The New York State Office of Emergency has issued tips for beating the heat and preventing illness:
• Limit strenuous activity and exercise, especially during the sun's peak between 11 AM and 4 PM.
• Eat less protein and more fruits and vegetables. Eat small meals, but eat more often. Do not eat salty foods.
• Drink at least two to four glasses of water per hour during extreme heat, even if you do not feel thirsty. Avoid beverages containing alcohol or caffeine.
• If possible, stay out of the sun and stay in air conditioning. If you must go outdoors, wear sunscreen.
• Make sure there is enough water and food for pets and limit their exercise.
For more information on keeping safe during the heat wave, visit the Office of Emergency website here.