Understand the UV index. Here’s what it means for you
Orlando, Florida. – Meteorologists talk about what the UV Index numbers are all the time and what they will be on that particular day, but what does it mean for you?
Well, first, UV rays are sunlight that passes through the atmosphere. Invisible light coexists with visible light and ultraviolet rays fall within the invisible light spectrum.
The UVA index, or UVB index, is a standard measurement of the level of sunburn-causing ultraviolet rays in a specific area and time. This is used in the daily and hourly forecasts that everyone uses.
Overexposure during days with high UV values can be harmful, both in the short term and in the long term.
Many environmental and atmospheric factors can modify the amount of radiation that reaches the Earth’s surface. For example, cloud cover, the thickness of the ozone layer that acts as a protective layer, land elevation, and the amount of air pollution.
We are now in the summer season in Central Florida, which means the risk of UV rays is higher.
The UV index data is run from NOAA’s Global Forecast System (GFS) model, which includes observations from NOAA’s weather satellites about ozone, clouds and snow.
You must be wondering why snow is included in the UV Index data? The reason is that snow is very reflective. On a sunny day, fresh snow can reflect up to 90% of UV rays, increasing the likelihood of sunburn.
Another thing to consider is that the atmosphere is thinner at higher altitudes and absorbs less UV radiation coming from the sun. UV rays all come from the sun and have nothing to do with heat.
The UV index is measured from 0-11+. A higher UVI value means more protection from harmful UV rays is needed. The risks are higher with higher amounts of UV radiation.
Keep in mind that UV Index values between 0-2 are considered low risk for the average person. However, preventive measures still need to be taken. Wearing sunglasses on sunny days and applying sunscreen are great ways to protect yourself.
A UV index between 3-5 is considered moderate risk. If you plan to go out, take precautions. Cover up and wear a hat and sunglasses. Use sunscreen of at least SPF-30. Stay in the shade near midday when the sun is at its strongest.
A UV Index reading of 6-7 indicates a high risk of damage from unprotected sun exposure. Protection from sun damage is needed. Limit the time you spend in the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Cover your body, wear a hat and sunglasses, and use sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30.
A UV index between 8-10 means there is a very high risk of damage from unprotected sun exposure. Protection from sun damage is needed. Take extra precautions. Wear a wide-brimmed hat and sunglasses, use sunscreen of at least SPF-30, and wear a long-sleeved shirt and pants if possible.
A UV index of 11 or higher means high risk of damage from unprotected sun exposure. Try to avoid exposure to sunlight during the afternoon hours, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Use sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of at least 30 every two hours.
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(Tags for translation) Weather