SHA urges public to take precautions as extreme heat warning issued for Prince Albert and area
Things are heating up in the City of Prince Albert thanks to an extreme heat warning that went into effect for the area Tuesday morning.
The extreme heat will likely continue into Wednesday, with a cooler break following Thursday and Friday followed by extreme heat again over the weekend.
Lyle Karasiuk, Director of Public Affairs for Parkland Ambulance said people have to be prepared if they’re going to stay cool. That includes finding shade, wearing a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen, and filling up a water bottle for on the go.
“Step one find some shade if you are outdoors,” Karasiuk said. “Go outdoors in the early part of the morning or maybe in the evening, if you have chores, gardening those types of activities. Drink plenty of water throughout the day. Alcoholic beverages and soda pop are not hydrating you.
“They are actually dehydrating you. We want people to be sure that they are drinking good old fashioned water. Have yourself a treat, popsicles, ice cream, whatever you want, but don’t think of that as being the water that your body so desperately needs as it’s very hot out.”
The Saskatchewan Health Authority also reminded the public to take precautions during rising temperatures expected in many parts of the province this week. According to Environment Canada, extreme heat is coming to western Saskatchewan in the next few days, with temperatures expected to climb into the 30s.
Karasiuk said that you should be mindful of when outside. If you start to feel lightheaded, find some shade or get to a cool place. For homes without central air conditioning, that might involve getting creative.
“If have the means to get into somewhere cool, do that,” he said. “If you don’t have central air conditioning in your home, then you are going to need to find a way to keep cool or a fan.
“Ironically a fan can reduce the air coming towards you by as much as five to seven degrees. That’s a noticeable difference and it might mean it’s a bit more tolerable. Take frequent baths or showers to keep yourself cool,”
Another way is if you live in an apartment without air conditioning go to the common area. Other ways to beat the heat are visiting the public library or go window shopping at a store with air conditioning.
“But please do find the opportunity to get a break,” Karasiuk said.
If you are working outside at a construction site he also advises to get shade, drink lots of water, and eat smaller meals or snacks throughout the day.
“If you are sweating and suddenly the sweating is starting to get less, your skin is getting hot to the point that you are fevered, you are not making sense or somebody you know is not making sense, get them indoors get them cooled quickly,” Karsiuk said.
“If it does not subside relatively shortly, I mean within an hour you probably need to seek some medical attention. Call paramedics, call 811, visit your local family physician or go to the hospital ER whatever is appropriate for you,”
Karasiuk tells people to compare themselves to a pot with five centimetres of water and when you go outside the heat is turned on under the pot.
“As you are outside you sweat, as the pot starts to warm up it starts to steam, once it steams, once it steams it boils, if you do not put any more water in the pot the water will disappear, same thing for you outside. If you don’t put anymore water into you it will start to dry out meaning you will get fevers, dizzy, confused, nausea vomiting, what we call heat stroke,” Karasiuk said.
“Heat stroke is reversible but there comes a point just like the pot will burn on the stove as you shut the heat off or add more water the same thing for yourself outside, if you don’t get some shade, drink some water get indoors you could burn from the inside out literally,” Karasiuk added.
“You are just boiling and you will have a serious very sudden medical condition, which of course requires immediate assistance,” he added
The SHA also warned that Heat Stroke is a medical emergency. Call 9-1-1 or seek immediate medical assistance if you are caring for someone with a high body temperature, unconscious, confused or stopped sweating.
Karasiuk echoes some of the same points as the SHA who also advise people to stay out of the heat and cool yourself down.
They also advise to look out for others and watch out for isolated, elderly, ill or very young people and ensure they can keep cool, ensure that babies, children, older adults, adults, and pets are not left alone in stationary vehicles or unsupervised when near open water and check on elderly or sick neighbours, family or friends daily during the heat wave.
Another warning from the SHA is to practice Water Safety by choose a safe place to swim. Check for health and safety notices before wading into water. These notices can include warnings about water quality or a strong undertow.
Keep young children and inexperienced swimmers in view and within arm’s reach when they are in water. This will reduce the risk of serious injury.
The heat warning is in effect for the City of Prince Albert , District of Lakeland including Emma Lake and Anglin Lake, R.M. of Birch Hills including Muskoday, R.M. of Buckland including Wahpeton and Spruce Home , R.M. of Canwood including Debden and Big River Reservation, R.M. of Duck Lake including Duck Lake and Beardy’s, R.M. of Garden River including Meath Park and Albertville, R.M. of Leask including Leask, Mistawasis and Parkside, R.M. of Meeting Lake, R.M. of Paddockwood including Candle Lake and Paddockwood , R.M. of Prince Albert including Davis, R.M. of Shellbrook including Sturgeon Lake, R.M. of Spiritwood including Spiritwood and Leoville and the R.M. of St Louis including One Arrow Res. and Domremy.
A slow-moving surface ridge of high pressure from the Northwest US is moving into the western prairies resulting in a prolonged period of hot and humid conditions. Daytime high temperatures of 29 degrees celsius and warm overnight lows of 15 degrees celsius are expected.
Extreme heat affects everyone.
The risks are greater for young children, pregnant women, older adults, people with chronic illnesses and people working or exercising outdoors.
Heat warnings are issued when very high temperature or humidity conditions are expected to pose an elevated risk of heat illnesses, such as heat stroke or heat exhaustion.