Heat wave in New York City: New Yorkers are coping with extreme warmth and humidity

Heat wave in New York City: New Yorkers are coping with extreme warmth and humidity

New York City (WABC) — A heat advisory remains in effect Friday as city officials urge New Yorkers to take precautions as temperatures continue to rise in what could be the first heat wave of the summer.

The city’s mayor described the climate event as a global “climate catastrophe” that would be a “matter of life and death” over the next few days.

The heat intensity is expected to reach its peak between noon and 8 pm on Friday and Saturday.

The city’s intermediate and Olympic pools will be open for an additional hour, until 8 p.m

Mayor Eric Adams and officials with New York City’s Office of Emergency Management held a briefing Thursday to highlight local resources to help keep residents safe.

Adams said that the city is witnessing what this region has not yet witnessed.

“We expect extreme temperatures to hit New York City, with temperatures expected to reach the upper 90s with heat indexes as high as 105,” said New York City Emergency Management Commissioner Zach Escol. “It is essential that New Yorkers understand the potential dangers of high heat and humidity, which are among the deadliest weather emergencies we face in New York City.”

As a result, Adams announced the opening of 500 cooling centers throughout the city.

Related | Tips and resources for dealing with extreme heat in NY, NJ and CT

New York City is under an excessive heat warningKimberly Richardson has more on the heat warning and how New Yorkers can stay cool.

“We are here again because climate change is a public health issue and a health crisis,” Health Commissioner Dr. Ashwin Vasan said. “Although very hot days are normal and we see them from time to time, the number of hot days each year is not normal, and heat is the deadliest of all extreme weather events.”

City officials urged New Yorkers to use air conditioning. A fan is not enough, Vasan said

“More than 80% of heatstroke deaths in recent years occurred in people exposed to heat in homes without air conditioning,” Vasan said. “So the best way to prevent heat illness is to stay in a cool, indoor place with air conditioning. A fan is not enough.”

Officials say as many as 25% of people in some low-income neighborhoods do not have access to air conditioning. Adams is urging the federal government to fund a program that better supports home cooling services.

The city was under its first extreme heat warning since Aug. 13, 2021. It is the highest level of heat alert issued by the National Weather Service, and is set when the agency deems conditions to be “extremely dangerous.”

To find the nearest cooling center, including hours, New Yorkers can call 311 or visit the City’s Cooling Center Finder.

The New York City Department of Emergency Management and the Department of Health offer the following tips to help protect people from the heat:

New Yorkers can now also find pet-welcoming cooling centers throughout the five boroughs. The city has also partnered with Petco to provide New Yorkers and their pets with additional space to escape the heat. All locations can be found in the city’s cooling center finder. As a reminder, service animals are always allowed in cooling centers.

In New York City, most heat-related deaths occur after exposure to heat in homes without air conditioning. Air conditioning is the best way to stay safe and healthy when it’s hot outside, but some people at risk for heat illness don’t have or don’t turn on air conditioning.

The New York City Department of Emergency Management and the Department of Health are urging New Yorkers to take steps to protect themselves and help others who may be more at risk from the heat. For more information, including heat-related health tips and warning signs of heat illness, visit NYC.gov/health or NYC.gov/beattheheat.

Outdoor pools in New York City are open during the summer. All medium and Olympic-sized outdoor pools at NYC Parks will extend their operation by one hour and remain open until 8 p.m. on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays in response to the heat advisory. Standard pool protocols apply, so you may bring your bathing suit, towel and padlock to secure your belongings. More information can be found at nyc.gov/parks/pools.

A citywide map of outdoor cooling options (including spray showers, drinking fountains, and more) can be found online at Cool It! New York City.

During extreme temperatures, the Department of Social Services (DSS) issues a Code Red Alert. During Code Reds, shelter is available to anyone experiencing homelessness, with those experiencing heat-related discomfort also having access to a designated cooling area. DSS staff and the non-profit agency’s contracted outreach teams who engage with individuals experiencing homelessness 24/7/365 redouble their efforts during extreme heat, focusing on connecting vulnerable New Yorkers experiencing unsheltered homelessness to services And shelter.

Additional health and safety tips for heat protection

  • Go to an air-conditioned space, even if just for a few hours.
  • Stay out of the sun and avoid extreme temperature changes.
  • Avoid strenuous activities, especially during peak sun hours: 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. If you must do strenuous activity, do it during the cooler part of the day, which is usually in the morning between 4 a.m. and 7 a.m.
  • Remember: drink water, rest, and stay in a shaded area if you work outside or if your work is strenuous. Drink water every 15 minutes even if you’re not thirsty, rest in the shade, and pay attention to others on your team. The employer must provide water, rest, and shade when doing work during extreme heat.
  • Wear lightweight, light-colored clothing when you are indoors without air conditioning or outside.
  • Drink fluids, especially water, even if you don’t feel thirsty. Your body needs water to stay cool. People who are on a liquid-restricted diet or taking diuretics should first talk with their doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider. Avoid drinks that contain alcohol or caffeine.
  • Eat small, frequent meals.
  • Cool down with a cool bath or shower.
  • Participate in activities that will keep you cool, such as going to the movies, visiting museums, walking in an air-conditioned mall, or swimming in a pool or beach.
  • Make sure doors and windows are fitted with secure screens and, in apartments where children live, window guards. Air conditioners must be installed in buildings higher than six floors with supports so that they are secured and do not fall on those below them.
  • Never leave your children or pets in the car, even for a few minutes.

Know the warning signs of heat illness

Call 911 immediately if you or someone you know has:

  • Confusion, disorientation, or dizziness.

If you or someone you know feels weak or faint, go to a cool place and drink water. If there is no improvement, call a doctor or 911.

Keep your pets safe

  • Avoid dehydration: Pets can become dehydrated quickly, so give them plenty of fresh, clean water.
  • Walk your dog in the morning and evening: When the temperature is very high, do not let your dog stay on the hot asphalt. Your pet’s body can quickly overheat, and the sensitive paw pads can burn.
  • Know when your pet is in danger: Symptoms of overheating in pets include excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and breathing rates, drooling, mild weakness, unresponsiveness, or even collapse.

Improper use of fire hydrants

Improper opening of fire hydrants wastes 1,000 gallons of water per minute, causes flooding on city streets, and reduces water pressure to dangerous levels, hindering a fire department’s ability to fight fires safely and quickly.

Use “spray caps” to reduce faucet output to a safe 25 gallons per minute while still providing relief from heat. To obtain a splash cap, an adult 18 or older with proper identification can go to their local fire station and request one.

Energy saving tips

During periods of heavy electricity use, such as hot and humid days, it is important to conserve energy as much as possible to avoid power outages and other electrical interruptions. Although reducing your energy use may seem inconvenient, your cooperation will help ensure that utility providers can provide uninterrupted electric service to you and your neighbors, especially those who use electrically powered medical equipment or are at risk for heat-related illness and death:

  • Set the air conditioner to 78 degrees Fahrenheit or “low.”
  • Run appliances such as ovens, washers, dryers, and dishwashers early in the morning or late at night when it is cooler outside to reduce heat and humidity in your home.
  • Close the doors to keep cold air in and hot air out while the air conditioner is running.
  • Keep shades, curtains, and curtains closed. About 40 percent of unwanted heat comes through windows.
  • Turn off air conditioners, lights, and other appliances when you’re not home, and use a timer or smart technology to turn on your air conditioner about a half-hour before you get home. Keep your air conditioner filters clean.
  • If you run a business, keep your door closed while the air conditioner is running.
  • Tell your utility provider if you or someone you know relies on medical equipment that requires electricity.

For more information, visit NYC.gov/beattheheat. New Yorkers are also encouraged to stay informed by signing up for Notify NYC, the City’s free emergency communications program, to receive free emergency alerts and updates in your preferred language and format by visiting NYC.gov/NotifyNYC, and calling 311 (212-639-) 9675 for Video Relay Service, or TTY: 212-504-4115), follow @NotifyNYC on Twitter, or get the free Notify NYC mobile app for your Apple or Android device.

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