(Gloucester Township, NJ) – The Camden County Health Officer has issued a Heat Alert for Camden County from noon until 7 p.m. today, and again from noon until 7 p.m. tomorrow. The latest weather forecast obtained by the Freeholder Board is calling for hot and dry conditions with heat indexes around 100 degrees for the next two days.
“When the Camden County Health Officer issues a Heat Alert, municipalities are notified that it would be appropriate to open municipal cooling centers to the public,” said Freeholder Carmen Rodriguez, liaison to the Camden County Department of Health and Human Services. “Each town in Camden County has identified and is responsible for activating its own municipal cooling center. Please call your municipality for the location of the closest cooling center.”
The Camden County Freeholder Board is once again distributing free fans to Senior Citizens this year. Residents age 60 and older with an income of $25,000 or less are eligible to receive a fan at no cost. To request a fan or to obtain more information, please call the Camden County Division of Senior Services at (856) 858-3220.
“Please remember to check on elderly relatives and neighbors during the extreme heat,” Rodriguez said. “When temperatures rise to dangerous levels, you should not over exert yourself outdoors in the sun.”
To avoid heat-related illness, the Camden County Department of Health and Human Services recommends the following:
- Avoid, as much as possible, working or playing in the hot sun or other hot areas. If you must be out in the sun, wear a head covering. A wide-brimmed hat or visor will not only protect your head from intense rays of the sun, it will also provide a shield for your eyes.
- Use air-conditioners and fans. Open windows to release trapped hot air.
- Those taking regular medication should consult with their physician. Some medications cause an adverse reaction in hot weather.
- Wear lightweight clothing.
- Drink plenty of non-alcoholic liquids, warm and cool. Because the body loses fluids in the heat, drinking lots of liquids helps to avoid dehydration.
- Maintain a normal diet.
- Shower or bathe in water that is near skin temperature.
- Do not leave older people, children or pets alone in cars.
- The early warning signs of heat stress are decreased energy, slight loss of appetite, faintness, light-headedness and nausea. People experiencing these symptoms should go to a cool environment, drink liquids, remove excess clothing and rest.
Serious signs of heat stress include unconsciousness, rapid heartbeat, throbbing headache, dry skin, chest pain, mental confusion, irritability, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle cramps, staggering and difficulty breathing. People experiencing these symptoms should get to immediate medical attention. While waiting for help, move the person to a cool area, remove excess clothing, spray with water, and fan the person. In an emergency, dial 911.