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What’s on tap for Thursday? A national heat wave and severe storms, forecasters say

How to stay safe in really hot weather

As summer temperatures rise, so does the chance of heat-related illnesses for you, your kids and pets. Here's how to enjoy the hot weather safely.
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As summer temperatures rise, so does the chance of heat-related illnesses for you, your kids and pets. Here's how to enjoy the hot weather safely.

There’s a good chance for storms in Bradenton and Manatee County on Thursday, and they could be severe, according to the National Weather Service.

To add to the mix, a \heat wave is expected to hit the eastern two-thirds of the country, and the heat index here will likely top 100 degrees by Thursday afternoon.

Sunny conditions are expected to prevail throughout the day with scattered showers and thunderstorms rolling in mostly after 2 p.m., according to NWS. There’s a 50 percent chance of rain during the day, but less than a tenth of an inch of rainfall is predicted.

The rain chances drop to 30 percent on Thursday night with scattered showers and thunderstorms possible before 11 p.m. and again after 2 a.m.

Forecasters predict a high around 91 degrees and a low around 76 degrees. That temperature range sounds pretty mild — until a humidity of 71 percent is factored in. As a result, the heat index will climb up to around 105 degrees by 3 p.m. before gradually tapering off.

At heat indexes of 103-124 degrees, heat cramps or heat exhaustion are likely and heat stroke is possible with prolonged exposure to heat and/or physical activity outside, according to NWS.

Tips to stay safe from the heat include:

  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Wear light weight and loose fitting clothing.
  • Stay inside an air-conditioned environment, if possible.
  • Move indoors if the heat becomes overwhelming as soon as possible.
  • Anyone overcome by heat should be moved to a cool and shaded location immediately.
  • Heat stroke is a medical emergency, call 911.
  • Do not leave pets outside in the heat.
  • Never leave a pet or a child inside a parked vehicle.

Symptoms of a heat stroke include:

  • Throbbing headache.
  • Dizziness.
  • Lack of sweating despite the heat.
  • Red, hot and dry skin.
  • Muscle weakness or cramps.
  • Nausea and vomiting.
  • Rapid heartbeat.
  • Rapid and shallow breathing.

The national heat wave is expected to continue and possibly worsen over the weekend, bringing a host of dangerous heat-related conditions to normally temperate regions of the country.

In Florida, high summer heat indexes are nothing out of the ordinary, but this year has already been exceptionally hot. May’s temperatures broke state heat records, and June came close.

There is some good news though — the Atlantic is currently free of tropical disturbances that could develop into tropical storms, according to the National Hurricane Center.

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