It’s been hot and it’s going to stay hot — for a while.
The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory, which will remain in effect until 10 p.m. Friday for areas including Oklahoma, Logan, Kingfisher, Canadian and Cleveland counties.
During the interim period maximum heat indices will remain near 105 degrees with overnight lows in the middle 70s, according to the NWS’ forecast for Edmond. A continuation of the very hot daytime temperatures and only modest cooling at night will increase the danger of heat-related illnesses.
Edmond’s forecast includes a high near 104 on Wednesday, a near 105 on Thursday, a near 100 on Friday and a high near 100 on Saturday. Highs Sunday through Tuesday are expected to be in the mid to upper 90s.
Chances of precipitation during the forecast period are zero.
About 4 p.m. Tuesday, it was 101 degrees at the Guthrie-Edmond Regional Airport. Winds were southeast at 8 mph. The heat index, a measure of how it really feels when relative humidity is factored with the actual air temperature, was at 107 degrees.
Studies indicate that, other things being equal, the severity of heat disorders tends to increase with age, according to the National Weather Service.
Conditions that cause heat cramps in a 17-year-old may result in heat exhaustion in someone 40 years old, and in heat stroke in a person over 60. Sunburn, with its ultraviolet radiation burns, can significantly retard the skin’s ability to shed excess heat.
Acclimatization has to do with adjusting sweat-salt concentrations, among other things. The idea is to lose enough water to regulate body temperature, with the least possible chemical disturbance — salt depletion.
Health officials urge anyone doing outside work to begin hydrating themselves well in advance. Oklahomans are being urged to take extra precautions if they work or spend time outside during the heat wave. When possible, reschedule strenuous activities to early morning or evening.
Residents are also urged to know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke, which can be fatal. Guidelines include wearing lightweight and loose-fitting clothing when possible, and drinking plenty of water or sport drinks before and during outdoor activities.
To reduce risk during outdoor work, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recommends scheduling frequent rest breaks in shade or air conditioned environments.
Anyone overcome by heat should be moved to a cool and shaded location. Heat stroke is an emergency, so if it is suspected, call 911, officials say.
Additionally, with the hot and stagnant weather and little wind to help disperse pollutants, an air quality alert is in effect for the Oklahoma City metro area through Wednesday evening.
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