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New York public health officials caution NYers of dangerous heat conditions

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New York public health officials caution New Yorkers of dangerous heat conditions forecast to impact much of the state later this week. New Yorkers should prepare in advance for high heat and humidity in the forecast on Thursday and Friday, with heat index values — or “feels like” temperatures — of more than 100 degrees in lower elevation areas across the state. Gov. Kathy Hochul encouraged New Yorkers to take precautions and plan ahead as extreme heat makes its way into the state.

Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services Commissioner Jackie Bray said, “Later this week, New York will see apparent temperatures near or over 100 throughout much of the state. These temps can be dangerous for some if outside for extended periods or without air conditioning. Take time now to plan ahead and consider alternative plans for Thursday and Friday if you’re in an area expected to see extreme conditions.”

New Yorkers are encouraged to monitor their local weather forecast for the most up-to-date information. For a complete listing of weather watches, warnings, advisories and latest forecasts, visit the National Weather Service website.

The state Department of Health encourages New Yorkers to be aware of the symptoms of heat-related illness and maintains an updated list of Cooling Centers, which are submitted by local health departments and emergency management offices.

Older adults and individuals with chronic diseases are most vulnerable to heat-related illnesses. Factors such as obesity, fever, dehydration, prescription drug use, heart disease, mental illness, poor circulation, sunburn, alcohol use, outdoor work, and living in urban areas where pollution may linger on hot days can increase the risk of heat-related illnesses. Signs of heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke and heat exhaustion include high body temperatures (103 degrees or higher), hot, red, dry, or clammy skin, fast, strong pulse or a fast, weak pulse, headache, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, tiredness or weakness, muscle cramps or spasms and losing consciousness, passing out, and fainting. If these symptoms are evident, call 911, move the person to a cool place, loosen clothing, and put cool wet cloths on their body or get them into a cool bath. Heat-related illnesses can be avoided and there are numerous ways they can be prevented.

New Yorkers are encouraged to keep windows and shades open on the shady side and closed on the sunny side of the house if there is no air conditioning in the home, to drink plenty of fluids, but avoid alcohol, caffeine, and sugary drinks, to take cool showers and baths, stay out of the sun, avoid strenuous outdoor activity during the hottest part of the day (between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.), to stay out of the sun, wear sunscreen and a ventilated hat when in the sun, and to never leave children, pets or those with special needs in a parked car, even briefly, as temperatures in the car can become dangerous within just a few minutes.

To alleviate the impact of extreme heat, there are public air-conditioned locations where residents can cool down, including cooling centers, libraries, shopping malls, and supermarkets.