As California's heat wave continues, state health officials are advising residents to try and stay cool and pay attention for signs of heat exhaustion.
“Illnesses due to prolonged exposure to extreme heat can be very serious, especially in the elderly and young,” said Dr. Ron Chapman, director of the California Department of Public Health (CDPH). “It's important to drink lots of water, keep cool and take other precautions when temperatures rise.”
Officials recommend staying out of the sun between the hours of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when UV rays are the strongest, and limiting physical activity performed during these times as well. If you must work outside, be sure to take plenty of breaks and find shade, while also staying hydrated even if you don't feel thirsty.
Wearing sunglasses that have 100 percent UVA and UVB protection and putting on a wide-brimmed hat to cover your face and neck are also recommended. Before going outside officials say people should apply sunscreen, at least SPF 15, and reapply every two hours.
Never leave unattended children or elderly people in a parked car and if at any point your body temperature reaches 102 degrees or higher, seek medical attention. The CDPH says warning signs of heat exhaustion can include heavy sweating, muscle cramps, weakness, vomiting, paleness or dizziness.
KPCC reports that record-breaking highs for the date were recorded on Thursday in multiple SoCal areas, including Lancaster's and Woodland Hills' 109-degree-days. In order to cope with these sweltering conditions, California residents are being encouraged to reduce their energy usage in order to help avoid possible power outages.
According to KPCC, this "Flex Alert" is a system paid for by groups like Southern California Edison, which tells residents when to temper their power consumption. The Flex campaign suggests not washing clothes until 6 p.m. or later (after peak energy-use hours), and turning thermostats up to at least 78 degrees at home.
This Flex Alert continues through Friday at 6 p.m. but has been lifted for this upcoming weekend.
For residents in South L.A. looking to cool down, there are five public pools in the area available for use, as well as some air-conditioned public libraries and recreation centers. For more information on how to beat the heat, check out OnCentral's list of options.