LB - Lamb Auto 0617 Nissan Red 989x150

Home | Classifieds | Place Ad | Public Notices | Galleries | Kudos | Obits | Real Estate | Subscriber Services | Villager | Health Directory | Contact Us
The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : latest news : latest news June 30, 2016


7/3/2013 2:04:00 PM
Extended excessive heat in Arizona brings warnings on heat-related illness, death
Health officials were warning Arizonans to take excessive heat seriously and know the signs of heat-related illnesses, as southern Arizona faces another five days of temperatures at 110 or above. (Photo by rcbodden via Creative Commons/flickr)
Health officials were warning Arizonans to take excessive heat seriously and know the signs of heat-related illnesses, as southern Arizona faces another five days of temperatures at 110 or above. (Photo by rcbodden via Creative Commons/flickr)
A National Weather Service map shows areas where red-flag warnings are predicted for the week. (Map courtesy the National Weather Service)
A National Weather Service map shows areas where red-flag warnings are predicted for the week. (Map courtesy the National Weather Service)
Outdoor workers and heat
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration says there are several steps outdoor workers can take to protect themselves from heat-related illnesses:

- Drink water every 15 minutes;

- Rest in the shade to cool down;

- Wear a hat and light-colored clothing;

- Learn about symptoms of heat-related illnesses;

- Keep an eye out for fellow workers.

By Emilie Eaton
Cronkite News Service

WASHINGTON - As wildfires burned in northern Arizona, health officials were warning Monday about the danger of excessive temperatures that were baking Phoenix and the southern half of the state.

The National Weather Service issued an excessive heat warning Monday for Phoenix and southern Arizona, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration urged outdoor workers to drink water and be aware of the signs of heat-related illnesses.

Temperatures will linger close to 110 degrees for the next several days in the Valley, with highs of 111 degrees expected on the Fourth of July, according to the weather service. Some areas of the state will be even hotter - in Lake Havasu City, for example, temperatures are expected to hit 115 degrees at least twice this week.

People should not treat the heat lightly, officials said.

"Heat is a silent killer," said National Weather Service Director Louis Uccellini, in a conference call Monday.

David Michaels, the assistant labor secretary in charge of OSHA, said that 658 people die on average annually from heat-related illnesses. Construction and farm workers are at greatest risk for heat-related illnesses and death, he said during the conference call.

Michaels recommended that workers drink water every 15 minutes, rest in the shade, and wear a hat and light-colored clothing. They should also learn the signs of heat-related illnesses and watch out for fellow workers.

"We suggest every worker work in a buddy system," Michaels said.

Heat exhaustion and heat stroke are the two most common illnesses, he said. Signs of heat stroke include profuse sweating, strokes, confusion, fainting and red, hot, dry skin.

Michaels said that while many focus on the risks heat poses to children, pets and the elderly, workers are vulnerable, too - and there's an app for that.

Michaels said workers can download a free iPhone, Blackberry or Android application from OSHA that calculates the heat index for a work site, displays the risk level of working there, and suggests preventive measures to protect workers.

Jonathan Jacobs, a spokesman for the Phoenix Fire Department, said the department gets more calls for heat-related illnesses once temperatures begin to spike.

In 2011, the department received 1,152 calls for heat-related illnesses, and in 2012 the department received 1,260 calls, Jacobs said. He estimates that the department has received 15 to 18 calls a day for heat-related illnesses recently.

But Jacobs said it is difficult to pin down an exact number since many of the illnesses that may be heat-related - dizziness, weakness, fatigue - may not be classified as heat-related calls.

"You can be in really good shape," Jacobs said, "but when it's hot out and you lose a lot of fluid ... it just shuts you down."

In the greater Phoenix area, churches, senior centers and other community organizations have joined together to form the Heat Relief Network. There are over 80 locations in the Valley for people to get water or get indoors during excessive heat.

Tim Cole, the homeless programs coordinator for the city of Phoenix, said heat-related illnesses and deaths can still affect Arizonans, even though they may have grown complacent.

"It's second nature to us (Arizonans) as to how we deal with it," Cole said.

On the other hand, he said, Arizona residents and officials are prepared for the heat unlike heat waves that affect other areas - like Chicago - which may injure and kill many because the residents are not used to it.

Cole also said many people are dying from heat in their homes because they don't have air conditioning. In order to combat that, the Heat Relief Network is promoting wellness checks, where people check in on neighbors or friends to make sure they're OK. If someone's air conditioning isn't working, they can be taken to a relief center.

But for workers, Michaels reiterated OSHA's campaign slogan: Water, rest and shade.

Taylor Waste

    Most Viewed     Recently Commented
•   Two people shot in Lake Montezuma; one dead (11176 views)

•   Jerome Declares Emergency: Town under mandatory water restrictions (6346 views)

•   Sedona's Midgley Bridge the site of another suicide (6291 views)

•   No arrests in Rimrock shooting that left one man dead (2470 views)

•   Cottonwood forum explores long-term solutions to Verde homelessness (2333 views)



Reader Comments

Posted: Friday, July 5, 2013
Article comment by: Annie Pez

Would be helpful to include a legend for the National Weather service map. Who knows what those colors represent?



Article Comment Submission Form
Comments are not posted immediately. Submissions must adhere to our Use of Service Terms of Use agreement. Rambling or nonsensical comments may not be posted. Comments are limited to Facebook character limits. In order for us to reasonably manage this feature we may limit excessive comment entries.
Submit an Article Comment
First Name:
Required
Last Name:
Required
Telephone:
Required
Email:
Required
Comment:
Required
Passcode:
Required
Anti-SPAM Passcode Click here to see a new mix of characters.
This is an anti-SPAM device. It is not case sensitive.
   


Advanced Search

HSE - We want to hear from you
Find more about Weather in Cottonwood, AZ
Click for weather forecast





Submission Links
 •  Submit your feedback about our site

Find It Features Blogs Celebrate Submit Extras Other Publications Local Listings
Classifieds | Place Ad | Galleries | Kudos | Real Estate | Subscriber Services | e-News | RSS | Site Map | Find Verde Jobs | Contact Us
LB - Yavapai College 0627 Business Admin 728x90

© Copyright 2016 Western News&Info, Inc.® The Verde Independent is the information source for Cottonwood and Verde Valley area communities in Northern Arizona. Original content may not be reprinted or distributed without the written permission of Western News&Info, Inc.® Verde News Online is a service of WNI. By using the Site, verdenews.com ®, you agree to abide and be bound by the Site's terms of use and Privacy Policy, which prohibit commercial use of any information on the Site. Click here to submit your questions, comments or suggestions. Verde News Online is a proud publication of Western News&Info Inc.® All Rights Reserved.

Software © 1998-2016 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved