Sweltering summer heat takes toll on Louisiana residents - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Sweltering summer heat takes toll on Louisiana residents

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BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -

It's hot outside. You can't quite bake cookies on your car's dashboard yet, but it certainly feels like it's getting there.

We are one week into the official summer season, and it feels like the sun has a grudge against Louisiana. It could be worse though, the mercury in California's Death Valley could spike to near historic levels. This weekend in Death Valley, temperatures are expected to be around 130 degrees.

This heat here at home takes its toll on first responders.

Mike Chustz with East Baton Rouge Parish EMS says they've responded to more than 15 cases of heat related injuries this week alone.

He says that increase is not unexpected for them because so many people often forget how dangerous the temperature and humidity can be when they're not prepared.

"If you're out in the weather all day, and many people have to be, you have to look out for each other. You have to take frequent breaks. You have to drink as much fluid as you can. People ask us the amount you need...as much as you can tolerate. If you can drink a gallon of water per hour, do it," said Chustz.

With the hot south Louisiana sun beating down on us, Baton Rouge residents are attempting to go on with their daily routines; whether it be doing construction or yard work outside, or getting exercise.

EBR Parish EMS workers are seeing that all too often people are not preparing their bodies to deal with the heat.

With temperatures in the upper 90s, not to mention the humidity, EBR medics encourage anyone who plans on being outside to be smart and start hydrating hours before venturing out into the sweltering summer heat.

"If you're out in the weather all day, and many people have to be, you have to look out for each other. You have to take frequent breaks. You have to drink as much fluid as you can. People ask us the amount you need...as much as you can tolerate. If you can drink a gallon of water per hour, do it," said Chustz.

The western U-S is experiencing a dangerous, record-breaking heat wave with temperatures expected to soar into the triple digits in a number of states.

People spending Friday afternoon around the LSU Lakes know just how important to take care of themselves and others this time of year.

"One of the things I do is make sure she's drinking water...staying hydrated," said Rayland Johnson about his daughter. "For myself, the same. Stay hydrated, drink water. When I feel like I'm getting too hot, go get into some air."

"Definitely stay away from carbonated and caffeinated drinks," said Michelle Alello.  "Alcohol is a no-no, although we're in Louisiana."

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