Summer Heat Brings Safety Concerns

By Ronelle Williams |

Published 06/18 2014 04:57PM

Updated 06/19 2014 10:20AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.)  With temperatures on the rise, those who work outside don't really have too much control over the elements and have to adjust.  But there's a never ending risk.

"I got a real sick stomach a couple of times, I've had to slow down and stop for a few minutes," said Pratt Lawns laborer Devin Hornbuckle.

In order to avoid any type of heat related illness, daily precautions are usually taken.

"What we do is just pound water at night when we're not working, when we're in the air conditioning just hammer it.  And then throughout the day you still want to drink as much but you can't catch up really so it's really in the evening when you're not working that you replenish everything," said Pratt Lawns owner Brad Pratt.

When staying hydrated, not only does the amount of water intake matter but the time frame as well.

"The best way to stay hydrated is to think about starting even before your activity," said Heartland Physician Cynthia Brownfield. "Drinking two eight ounce glasses of water or sports drink even before you get exposed to the heat. And then every twenty minutes thereafter do another eight ounces."

Stepping out into the heat without preparing for it can cause serious illnesses.

"You start with heat cramps, then you go to heat exhaustion where you're just dead, you just feel so tired.  Then you go to heat stroke where you're confused and you don't know what's going on and you might start acting kind of funny.  That is a medical emergency. As soon as you start to see symptoms that's when you want to cool somebody down," said Brownfield.

For those who have to spend a lot of time outside this summer, there is always a way to keep yourself and those around you safe.

"Unfortunately there are certain situations where people are unavoidably out in heat but if they can use those protective measures of wearing the appropriate clothing and remembering that heat related illness can affect anybody," said Brownfield.

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