Triple-digit heat indexes are expected later this week, and the Gadsden-Etowah EMA is encouraging citizens to take precautions in the dangerous heat.
A number of cooling stations will be open around Etowah County on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and a list of those stations will be shared in a release on Wednesday morning.
Warm temperatures with high humidity values will lead to heat index values approaching as high as 108 degrees for all of Etowah County, each afternoon Thursday through Saturday.
A Heat Advisory or Excessive Heat Warning are possible all three days. The Heat Index is a measure of how hot it really feels when relative humidity is factored in with the actual air temperature.
The City of Gadsden and the Gadsden/ Etowah County EMA wants to take this time to remind all citizens of the importance of heat safety.
Heat is one of the leading weather-related killers in the United States, and heat related illnesses can occur within a short period of exposure. Some populations are more susceptible to heat related illnesses: young children and infants, older adults, people with chronic medical conditions, pregnant women, and those who work outdoors.
Remember these tips:
• It is NEVER safe to leave an infant, toddler, disabled person, senior, or pet locked in a car. LOOK before you LOCK!
• Heat Exhaustion = Dizzy or faint, excessive sweating, clammy/cold skin, nausea or vomiting, weak/rapid pulse, muscle cramps
• Heat Stroke = Throbbing headache/ confusion, NO sweating, body temperature above 103 degrees, red/hot/dry skin, nausea or vomiting, rapid/strong pulse, may lose consciousness.
• When outdoors – slow down, take frequent breaks in the shade, dress appropriately, and minimize your exposure to the sun
• Eat light and drink plenty of water (not very cold).
• Provide adequate shelter and water for pets.