Mississippi and Alabama will see the hottest temperatures of the year this week. Heat indices will be near or over 100 for a majority of the twin states through the weekend.
"Check on your family, friends and neighbors, especially senior citizens in your community," said Mississippi Emergency Management Agency director, Robert Latham. "People really need to limit their time outside and drink plenty of water to avoid overheating and dehydration."
National Weather Service data shows 92 people died as a result of heat in 2013. It’s also important to remember “beat the heat, check the backseat.” Never leave children or pets unattended in a vehicle, not even for one minute. If you see a child in an unattended vehicle, dial 911 immediately.
HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF:
• Stay indoors as much as possible and limit exposure to the sun.
• Stay on the lowest floor out of the sunshine if air conditioning is not available.
• Consider spending the warmest part of the day in public buildings such as libraries, schools, movie theaters, shopping malls and other community facilities.
• Drink plenty of water. Persons who have epilepsy or heart, kidney or liver disease; are on fluid-restricted diets; or have a problem with fluid retention should consult a doctor before increasing liquid intake.
• Limit intake of alcoholic beverages.
• Dress in loose-fitting, lightweight and light-colored clothes that cover as much skin as possible.
• Protect face and head by wearing a wide-brimmed hat.
• Check on family, friends and neighbors who do not have air conditioning and who spend much of their time alone.
• Never leave children or pets alone in closed vehicles.
• Avoid strenuous work during the warmest part of the day. Use a buddy system when working in extreme heat and take frequent breaks.
SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF HEAT EXHAUSTION:
• Heavy sweating but skin may be cool, pale or flushed.
• Weak pulse.
• Normal body temperature is possible, but temperature will likely rise.
• Fainting or dizziness, nausea, vomiting, exhaustion and headaches are possible.
IF SOMEONE HAS SYMPTOMS OF HEAT EXHAUSTION:
• Move the victim to a cool area.
• Increase cool water intake.
• Place cool, wet towel on neck and under arms.
• Seek medical attention if symptoms worsen.
SIGNS OF HEAT STROKE, CALL 911 IF SOMEONE HAS THESE SYMPTOMS:
• High body temperature (105+).
• Hot, red, dry skin.
• Rapid, weak pulse and rapid shallow breathing.
• Victim will probably not sweat unless victim was sweating from recent strenuous activity.
• Possible unconsciousness.