STONEHAM — As this weekend’s projected heat wave approaches, Fire Chief and Emergency Management Director Matthew Grafton would like to remind residents to take precautions to protect themselves from the heat and humidity.
“The sun is incredibly powerful and can cause burns, dehydration and illnesses like heat stroke,” Chief Grafton said. “We’re encouraging residents to protect themselves by staying hydrated, wearing sunscreen, and checking in on loved ones and neighbors who may be more vulnerable to the heat’s negative effects.”
The National Weather Service is predicting that temperatures will reach into the 90s throughout the weekend in Stoneham. Regionally, temperatures are forecast to be in the 90s to lower 100s, and Saturday is expected to be the hottest day.
An Excessive Heat Watch has been issued by the National Weather Service for most of Massachusetts on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Eversource has provided the following tips to help customers prepare for the coming heatwave:
- Instead of leaving air conditioning off or at a low setting while at work or otherwise not home, leave air conditioners at a moderate temperature throughout the day. It uses more electricity to turn the appliance up significantly higher when you get home.
- It’s recommended that coils and filters in air conditioners are cleaned every three months.
- Do not block air vents with furniture, curtains or rugs.
- Seal any gaps in walls and outlets, as well as in window and door frames.
- Plan on using high energy appliances early or late in the day to conserve energy.
To prevent illness and injuries during the heat wave, the Stoneham Fire Department recommends the following safety tips from the American Red Cross, Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency and National Safety Council:
Heat Safety Tips:
- Hot cars can be deadly. Never leave children or pets in your vehicle. The inside temperature of the car can quickly reach over 100 degrees, even on a 70 degree day.
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of fluids, like water. Avoid drinking alcoholic beverages and beverages high in caffeine and sugar.
- Check on family, friends and neighbors who do not have air conditioning, who spend much of their time alone or who are more likely to be affected by the heat.
- If someone doesn’t have air conditioning, they should seek relief from the heat during the warmest part of the day in places like libraries, theaters, malls, etc. Those without air conditioning who stay at home are encouraged to stay on the lowest floor, out of the sun, avoid using the stove and oven, and use fans.
- Wear loose-fitting, lightweight, light-colored clothing. Avoid dark colors because they absorb the sun’s rays.
- Slow down, stay indoors and avoid strenuous exercise during the hottest part of the day, which is typically around 3 p.m.
- Postpone outdoor games and activities if the temperature is too hot.
- Avoid extreme temperature changes.
- Take frequent breaks if working outdoors.
- Check on animals frequently to ensure that they are not suffering from the heat. Make sure they have plenty of cool water.
- Learn to recognize and treat heat illnesses.
Tips for Parents:
- Limit playtime at peak sun exposure time and familiarize yourself with the signs of heat illnesses.
- Avoid burns. If playground equipment is hot to the touch, it is too hot for your child’s bare skin.