Dangerous Heat Affecting Wiregrass Workers

By: Tim Elliott Email
By: Tim Elliott Email
With temperatures consistently reaching the mid 90

Staff Photo: Jason Braverman
Daniel Schnaak, 17, stays hydrated while playing disc golf at Alexander Park in Lawrenceville on Monday afternoon. Temperatures were well into the 90s with the heat index reaching near 100 degrees.

Excessive heat is currently cooking the east coast.

But hot temps are nothing new to most Alabama residents.

With temperatures consistently reaching the mid 90's, many wiregrass residents are trying to find ways to beat the heat, especially those who make their living outdoors.

“It's real hot, I’m a slave driver so we don't take breaks,” chuckles Chris Forrester.

Forrester is working on the new Publix grocery store site on Ross Clark Circle and Cottonwood Road.

He’s one of countless men and women who earn their paychecks outside in the brutal summer heat.

“Yeah, I got to wear boots, jeans, shirts with seven inch sleeves, and a hard hat all day,”

“Listen to your body is the most important thing,”

Meteorologist Martha Spencer says the heat can have a profound effect on the human body.

“In the summer time, you hear heat index all the time, what that actually means is how the atmosphere feels on your skin. And basically if you're feeling weak, you're probably already dehydrated,” said Spencer.

While the sun maybe 93 million miles from earth, it still gives off a whole lot of heat. Doctors say if you have to be outside, do it for short periods of time, wear loose clothing, and drink plenty of water.

Doctors also suggest avoiding alcohol and sugary drinks.

It's all in an effort to prevent heat stroke.

“Heat stroke is a very serious condition which requires immediate medical help. Those especially at risk include the very young, the elderly and people with underlying medical problems,” said CBS News medical correspondent Dr. John LaPook.

Forrester says at the end of a long, hot day; you need to recover.

“The air conditioning is about 60, take a cold shower, and just relax.”

Symptoms of heat stoke include:
High temperature (over 103 degrees)
Confusion and even loss of consciousness

“When you wake up, you're dehydrated. You've been evaporating water and not drinking the whole night. So be sure to start your day with plenty of fluids. An important warning sign: not sweating when you expect to. You don't sweat when you don't have liquid to spare,” added Dr. LaPook.

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