Sweltering heatwave engulfs West Virginia; safety measures advised

BUCKHANNON — Residents across Ohio, Virginia and West Virginia are urged to brace for a potentially hazardous heatwave on Friday. Heat index values could reach a scorching 107 degrees, prompting the National Weather Advisory to issue a Heat Advisory in effect from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday.

The potent combination of hot temperatures and high humidity levels has health officials concerned about possible heat-related illnesses. Such conditions can be particularly dangerous for vulnerable populations, including the elderly, young children and pets. No child or pet should be left unattended in a vehicle, as the temperatures within can skyrocket in a matter of minutes.

For those planning to venture outdoors, the NWS recommends the following precautions:

  • Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the day.
  • Seek refuge in air-conditioned spaces and avoid direct sunlight.
  • If possible, reschedule strenuous activities to the cooler parts of the day, either early morning or late evening.
  • Familiarize yourself with the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
  • Opt for lightweight and breathable clothing.
  • Workers are advised to take frequent breaks in shaded areas or inside to cool down.

Heat stroke should not be taken lightly, the NWS warns. If someone is overcome by the heat, they should be moved to a cool location immediately. Heat stroke is a medical emergency, so don’t hesitate to call 911 if needed.

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