NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — With summer weather kicking into high gear and another day of 90-degree temperatures on tap for Thursday, officials are cautioning residents on heat safety.
As WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reported, to help ease the load on the electric grid, New York City has asked residents to keep their thermostats set at 78 degrees.
“Turn off air conditioners, lights, and other appliances when you’re not at home, that’s just common sense,” said Office of Emergency Management Commissioner Joe Esposito. “When the AC is running, keep the doors closed — again common sense — keep the doors closed, it keeps the cold air in and the hot air out.”
Esposito and Health Commissioner Mary Bassett and Office of Emergency Management Commissioner were also calling for New Yorkers to check on vulnerable family, friends and neighbors — and to watch for symptoms of heat stroke and heat exhaustion, 1010 WINS’ Al Jones reported.
“If you pay attention to your body, it gives you hints, but if you don’t pay attention, you’re going to wind up in serious trouble,” Esposito said.
Bassett said anyone suffering symptoms of heat exhaustion or heat stroke should call 911.
Symptoms include “Hot and dry skin, or cold and clammy skin, confusion, disorientation, nausea and vomiting, rapid heart beat, weakness, dizziness,” Bassett said.
City meals-on-Wheels has also asked people to keep an eye on the vulnerable. It’s also providing extra bottled water to meal recipients, delivery staff and volunteers.
Officials say you should try to avoid strenuous activity during the hottest times of the day, wear lightweight, loose-fitting clothing and drink plenty of water. Staying in an air-conditioned space if possible is also a good idea.
The Health Department says more than 80 percent of heat stroke deaths in recent years involved victims who were in homes without air conditioning.
But officials said if you must go outside, wear sunscreen and a hat to protect your face and head.
And you must never leave children, pets or those who require special care in a parked car or vehicle. Temperatures inside a closed car can reach over 140 degrees quickly and exposure to high temperatures can kill within minutes.
The New Jersey Office of Emergency Management says residents can contact their local and/or county Offices of Emergency Management for information on any open air-conditioned senior centers or cooling stations or call 211.
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