Hot town, summer in the city: the National Weather Service has issued heat advisories until 11 p.m. Wednesday for much of the Northeast and mid-Atlantic. Temperatures are flirting with the 100 degree markÂ along much of the East Coast, toasting cities like Philadelphia, New York, and Boston.
The cacophony of air conditioners humming will no doubt put a major strain on the region's power grid.Â But utilities and regional electrical system operators say there is ample generation capacity and no major blackouts are expected. Con Edison VP John Miksad said, "The system is designed for what we are experiencing today." I'm sure those depending on their AC for relief hope Mr. Miksad is right.
Health experts say some segments of our society are much more at risk for serious health risks, or even death, because of the heat. Here are some tips to keep our most vulnerable friends alive and well:
- Infants and young children are sensitive to the effects of high temperatures and rely on others to regulate their environments and provide adequate liquids.
- People 65 years of age or older may not compensate for heat stress efficiently and are less likely to sense and respond to change in temperature.
- People who are overweight may be prone to heat sickness because of their tendency to retain more body heat.
- People who overexert during work or exercise may become dehydrated and susceptible to heat sickness.
- People who are physically ill, especially with heart disease or high blood pressure, or who take certain medications, such as for depression, insomnia, or poor circulation, may be affected by extreme heat.
Visit older adults at risk at least twice a day and closely watch them for signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke. Infants and young children, of course, need much more frequent watching.