With temperatures threatening to reach triple digits again in Idaho’s warmest climates, concern mounts over heat-related illnesses and death.
News reports today (Aug. 4) indicate that heat likely played a role in at least 27 deaths in 11 states and the District of Columbia as soaring temperatures set records in the Midwest and East. In Illinois, at least six heat-related deaths were confirmed this week in Cook County (Chicago area), and police believe another six deaths on Wednesday could be heat-related.
A newsletter distributed by the Ada City-County Emergency Management and passed along by Cheryl Rost, ITD Safety & Risk Manager, provides potentially life-saving information about the effects of high temperatures.
“Heat kills by pushing the human body beyond its limits,” according to the Emergency Preparedness Pointers. “During an average summer, approximately 200 people across our country die because of heat-related injuries as a result of high summer temperatures.
“Under normal conditions, the body‘s internal thermostat produces perspiration that evaporates and cools the body, however, in extreme heat, evaporation is slowed and the body must work extra hard to maintain a normal body temperature. Most heat disorders occur because the victim has been overexposed to heat or has overexerted themselves for their age and physical condition.”
The newsletter includes suggestions on activity levels during a heat wave, symptoms of heat emergencies, treatment of heat emergencies and terms related to heat and exertion. For more information, consult the Ada City-County Emergency Management newsletter.