Officials Warn Extreme Heat Can Also Be Very Dangerous

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The outside world felt like a trip to the steam room Friday – and the trend was expected to continue through the weekend with temperatures forecast in the 90s each day.

A heat advisory was in effect through 8 p.m. Sunday for the five boroughs of New York City, with the hottest conditions in the afternoon. Saturday was expected to be the hottest day, but plenty of people were sweating and miserable in the midday sun Friday too.

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The high temperature in Central Park was 90 degrees. But with the heat index factored in, it felt like 96 degrees.

In Belmar, N.J., the heat index made it feel like 96 degrees, CBS 2’s John Elliott reported.

As CBS 2’s Tracee Carrasco reported, the steps in Columbus Circle just outside of Central Park are usually full of people, but on Friday were deserted as people tried to stay in the shade.


And officials have reminded the public that not only is the hot, humid weather uncomfortable, but it can also be dangerous. Thus, officials are urging people to be careful this weekend. Dr. Jeffrey Rabrich of St. Luke’s Hospital said there are some warning signs to look for.

“Any time you start feeling ill in the heat, feeling weak, nausea, feel like you may pass out, those kinds of things, it’s important at that moment to get out of the heat to get into a cool environment,” Dr. Rabrich said.

He also said it’s important to keep an eye on what you drink.

“People should stick with water. Some of the sports drinks are okay. You want to stay away from caffeine. Caffeinated beverages, soda, coffee, those kinds of things won’t help really as much as water,” Dr. Rabrich said.

With a line to get in, the Astoria Pool in Queens was the place to be Friday afternoon — for anyone looking for some relief from this stifling heat and humidity.

At 9:48 a.m., the temperature reading on one building was already 82 degrees. With temperatures expected to rise into the 90s this weekend, the New York City Office of Emergency Management has urged people to take precautions to prevent heat related illnesses.

Precautions were also announced in Newark, where Mayor Cory Booker and the Department of Child and Family Well-Being advised that people stay in air-conditioned environments and head to a cooling center if necessary.

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“With temperatures expected to exceed 90 degrees today and this weekend, it is imperative that our residents drink plenty of fluids, stay indoors in a cool climate, and avoid strenuous activity. Check on your neighbors, particularly the elderly or the young,” Booker said in a news release.

Everyone was trying to find a way to deal with the heat Friday.

“When you’re sweating and all that, you can get headaches,” said Dylan O’Connell of Staten Island. “I get headaches, so water helps out.”

“Drink lots of water — that’s pretty much it,” said Cameron Purcell.

And because it’s just the beginning with temperatures expected to be in the 90s–and feel like temperatures even higher — people are already making plans to stay out of the heat this weekend.

“Stay under the AC all day, drink plenty of water, lots of water. We might even run a tub with cold water for the kids and let them play,” added Shanequa Gore of Astoria.

“I’m in the shade; nice breeze going by the sun is working its way over, and when the sun gets to where I’m sitting, I go back to my room,” said Jim Behan of the Upper West Side.

“No beating the heat today. We ran probably four miles. We had to run and walk because it’s brutal out here, and really I suggest that everybody get inside because it’s really too hot unless you can go in the water,” a woman on Long Island told WCBS 880 reporter Sophia Hall.

The New York City Office of Emergency Management  reminded people to drink plenty of water, limit strenuous activity, wear light colored clothing, use sunscreen, and stay indoors if you can where there is air conditioning.

Cooling centers such as libraries and community buildings throughout the five boroughs will be open through Sunday — for anyone looking for a place to stay cool.

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