WAVE Country enters day three of extreme heat, officials double-down on dangers

Updated: Jul. 20, 2019 at 11:36 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Extreme heat can lead to some equally serious health issues - and Louisville officials aren’t taking the risks lightly.

Louisville and the majority of its surrounding areas have experienced concerning heat levels for three days in a row. Saturday, Mayor Fischer gathered representatives from public health, EMS and animal services to discuss the dangers associated with high temperatures.

Some of the messages remained the same from all departments, like the importance of finding shade and air conditioning. Public Health recommends prioritizing hydration if you’re outside longer than 20 or 30 minutes. That’s when symptoms of heat stress, like nausea and fatigue, typically start to kick in.

“Make sure you do not get behind on your hydration because once you get behind on it, it’s very, very difficult to catch up to where you are, you can dehydrate even faster that way,” Paul Kern with Metro Public Health and Wellness explained.

Fischer gathered Metro officials from all departments to discuss potential heat dangers.
Fischer gathered Metro officials from all departments to discuss potential heat dangers.(Source: WAVE 3 News)

Two to four cups every hour is the standard, but you’ll want to avoid chugging it all at once.

It’s also important to look out for pets. Metro Animal Services says sometimes hot weather can feel like a heavy coat for dogs, so it’s important to limit physical activity outside.

“Please, if you don’t have to take the animal, the best idea is to just leave it at home," Mark Sabatini said.

Signs of heat stroke in animals includes noticing if they’re being lethargic, displaying deep red gums, drooling and vomiting. Owners should get them out of heat and in cool water, not cold water and fan them down.

If you find a person in distress, get them out of the heat and into air conditioning as soon as possible. If you cannot move them, make sure you set up something to block the sun and provide shade.

The goal is to get the body temperature back to normal quickly.

“One of the first things we’re going to do is cool the areas - the armpits, the groin, behind the neck - those types of areas,” Jordan Yuodis with Jefferson County Fire explained. “Try and bring their body temperature back to normal.”

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