Beware of heat

Published 6:52 pm Wednesday, June 15, 2016

The official start of summer is only four days away and that means more hot temperatures are on the way. The National Weather Service has the high temperature in Selma remaining in the 90s for the foreseeable future, although rain has fortunately helped keep the weather below that number in recent days.

With the start of summer so close, it’s worth remembering safety tips to help stay cool.

The National Weather Service recommends slowing down in the heat, meaning to reschedule outside activities until the coolest time of the day. Children and seniors should stay in the coolest place available, which isn’t always a spot indoors.

If you’re outside and need a cool area to go, locations and libraries are a good place to stop.

While many of the tips are things we hear often during hot weather, a few of them might be something many didn’t think about. For example, the National Weather Service said do not direct portable electric fans toward you if the room temperature is hotter than 90 degrees.

Doing that would only cause more harm than good because the dry blowing air will dehydrate you faster.

It’s also important not to leave pets or children in a hot car. Dozens of children die in the United States in vehicular heatstroke deaths each year, including 24 in 2015 — which was actually the lowest number in more than 15 years, according to data on the NWS website.

Parents are also encouraged to touch a child’s safety seat and seat belt to ensure it’s not too hot before buckling in a child. The NWS also recommends teaching children not to play in or around cars because they might get in one and accidentally lock themselves in.

The summer can mean a lot of fun — afternoons at the pool and weekends at the beach — but it can also be deadly if the right precaution isn’t taken.