WEST CHESTER  (July 6) – With excessive heat in store for the Chester County region this week, state Senator Andy Dinniman advised residents to stay hydrated, avoid the outdoors during mid-day hours, and know the warning signs of heat-related illness.

“This is our first real heat wave of the summer. Take it easy and be cautious of the excessive heat for the next few days,” Dinniman said. “The hot and humid conditions are especially dangerous to the elderly and those in poor health, so please check in on any of your friends or neighbors who may be at risk for heat-related illness.”

Heat_Related_IllnessThe National Weather Service has issued an Excessive Heat Warning for Chester County and Southeastern Pennsylvania from 11 a.m. today (July 6) to 6 p.m. Friday, July 8. Temperatures are expected in the lower and mid-90s today and in the middle 90s on Thursday and Friday. The heat index values will be around 100 during the afternoon hours today, Thursday, and Friday.

Dinniman also shared these tips from the National Weather Service and the American Red Cross:

  • Avoid strenuous activity outdoors, especially during peak mid-day hours.
  • Wear light-colored, lightweight, loose-fitting clothing that provides protection from the sun.
  • Stay hydrated with cool liquids, but remember that alcoholic or caffeinated drinks can actually contribute to dehydration.
  • If you don’t have air conditioning, seek air-conditioned environments like malls, movie theaters, libraries, or senior centers.
  • Do NOT leave children or pets alone in unattended vehicles. A car’s interior can reach lethal temperatures in a matter of minutes.
  • Dizziness, nausea, headache, rapid heartbeat, chest pain, fainting and breathing problems are all warning signs of heat-related illness and help should be sought immediately. Anyone overcome by heat should be moved to a cool area. Heat stroke is an emergency, call 9-1-1.
  • Be prepared for potential power outages. If you experience a power outage, report it to PECO at 1-800-565-7292

In addition, the Chester County Department of Aging Services has complimentary box fans available for senior citizens (age 60 and older) who are in need. The fans are courtesy of PECO. Please contact the department at (610) 344-6350 to request a fan.

“Senior citizens and those with underlying health conditions are particularly vulnerable to the heat,” Dinniman said. “In addition, air quality alerts have also been issued for the nearby Philadelphia region, meaning air pollution levels may become unhealthy for sensitive groups that include children, people suffering from asthma, heart disease or other lung diseases, and the elderly.”

“Please be cognizant of the dangers of excessive heat and keep an eye out for the warning signs of heat-related illness. That goes for pets, too. Be sure they have access to plenty of water and don’t leave them outside or in the sun for lengthy periods of time,” he added.