Dangerous heat wave hits South Florida

Posted at 5:59 AM, Jul 07, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-07 07:20:02-04

A dangerous heat wave has hit South Florida this week, bringing dangerous temperatures and heat indices of more than 100 degrees.

On Wednesday, West Palm Beach tied the high temperature record of 95 degrees.

Heatstroke can be a big problem in South Florida. It's when your body gets overheated and can't function anymore, causing a potentially deadly situation.

Heatstroke can creep up on you.  What you think you can normally handle with no problem, like mowing the lawn, running, or even sitting on the beach, can be dangerous in this type of heat.

More than 600 people die each year from heat exposure.

It's important to recognize the signs of heat stroke for you and the people around you.

"Some of the symptoms you should be cognizant of are rapid heart rate, excessive sweating, nausea, vomiting, especially if you are outside and you suddenly stop sweating.  (At that point) you've crossed over from heat exhaustion to heat stroke, which is a true emergency," said Palm Beach Fire Rescue Capt. Albert Borroto.

If you see this happening to someone, call 911 then bring them inside to cool down.

If you're going to be outside for work or pleasure, below are some things to do that will prevent overheating:

1. Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! Sweat, replace fluids
2. Take frequent breaks inside to cool down core temp
3. Check on elderly and children. They are the most susceptible.
4. Wear loose-fitting breathable, fabrics that will help the natural sweat process.

Here are some things you should NOT DO:

1. Do not drink alcohol or coffee, they accelerate dehydration
2. Do not over exert yourself, take it easy.
3. Do not drink too much electrolytes. Too much Gatorade-type drinks can lead to electrolyte overload.
4. Never leave pets or people in a locked car. Temperatures can quickly climb to 150 degrees inside a car.