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County Executive Owens Warns Residents to Prepare for Excessive Heat

Annapolis, MD (July 17, 2006) - Anne Arundel County Executive Janet S. Owens warns residents to be aware of the excessive heat forecasted over the next few days, and to be advised the National Weather Service has issued a Heat Advisory for the area.

" I urge all citizens to check on neighbors, especially elderly residents who are without air conditioning," said County Executive Owens. "Don’t assume someone else has checked in on them. Go to their home and offer them assistance if needed," she added.

Temperatures in the area are expected to hit 95 degrees, and that temperature combined with a humidity reading of 50 percent will produce a heat index or a "feels-like" temperature of 105 degrees. The heat index combines the effects of heat and humidity. When heat and humidity combine to reduce the amount of evaporation of sweat from the body outdoor exercise becomes dangerous, even for those in good shape.

"The Anne Arundel County Department of Health encourages all residents to take special precautions to prevent heat-related illnesses. The elderly, young children, and those who have chronic health conditions such as heart disease or diabetes are especially at risk of dehydration and overheating. This can lead to heat exhaustion or heat stroke," said Health Officer Frances B. Phillips.

Key rules for coping with heat:

  • Drink plenty of fluids such as water and fruit juices
  • Avoid caffeine and alcohol that can make dehydration worse
  • Wear loose-fitting, lightweight and light-colored clothing to protect against the sun’s rays
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses
  • Remember to use sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher to protect your skin
  • Never leave children or pets in a car unattended-even with the windows open!
  • Instead of large meals, eat smaller meals more frequently
  • Limit strenuous activities outdoors -  Slow down and take frequent breaks
  • Limit outdoor activities from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and on days when poor air quality is announced.

County residents without air conditioning are also advised to utilize area malls and public libraries as a place to go cool off. To find Hot Weather Advice and other Summer Safety tips go to the Anne Arundel County Department of Health Website.


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