KCUR News
4:59 am
Mon August 13, 2007

Heat Dangerous for Ill and Elderly

Kansas City, MO – Health officials are warning the extreme heat can be dangerous, already contributing to two deaths in the area. KCUR's Maria Carter has more.

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Rising mercury indicates a rising health threat, especially for the elderly, infants, and those with a chronic illness. That's the word from the Kansas City Missouri Health Department. Spokesman Jeff Hershberger says the most important thing to do is stay out of the heat, but if a person must be outside, they should take some precautions.

Jeff Hershberger: Try to take frequent breaks. Take water with you. Just constantly be sipping on water. If you wait until your thirsty, you're probably already starting to dehydrate.

Also, he says wearing light colored clothing and avoiding caffeine and alcohol are important steps. Those without air conditioners are advised to escape the heat by going to libraries or other public buildings for at least a few hours in the afternoon. Relatives and neighbors are being asked to check up on the elderly.