Protecting Yourself During the Heat Wave

By: Mike McCarthy
By: Mike McCarthy

Knoxville (WVLT) - The numbers just don't quite do it justice. If you stepped outside Monday, you know the heat and humidity wrapped around you like hot and sticky blanket, and it looks as if the cool down isn't coming this week.

Volunteer TV's Mike McCarthy has more on what you need to know to beat the heat.

Not only can you overheat in these 90-plus temperatures, but so can your car. So keeping cool's anything but no sweat.

11-year-old Boone Cornell beats the heat by making a splash.

"It's fun. You get to play in the sand. And hang out in the water," Cornell said.

The sun's cranked the heat into 90s here in East Tennessee. Add in the humidity and it feels as if it's near 100.

"Children don't sweat as well as adults do. So they don't cool down as quickly as we do," Lifestar Outreach Coordinator J.R. Gore said.

So kids like Cornell need more than just the water on their skin.

"They need to stay more hydrated," Gore said.

And Gore says so do you, but if you wait till you're thirsty, you're already dehydrated.

"You want to stay away from caffeine and high sugar type drinks," Gore said.

Because sugary sodas just make you more thirsty.

"It's giving them too much sugar which takes more water to process," Gore said.

Your best bet's to hydrate with H20.

Before, during, and after any exercise. Sports drinks like Gatorade aren't bad either. The worst thirst quencher is alcohol.

"If you're sweating that's good. You're sweating the water and you need to keep drinking it. It's when you stop sweating that's the most serious," Gore said.

Because that could lead to heat stroke or exhaustion.

Not only can you breakdown, but the heat can also break down your car.

"Heat is probably as damaging---even more so than cold," said Ray Fisher from Fisher Tire.

So pop your hood and check out...

"Everything from your tires, to your cooling system, to your electrical system and battery," Fisher said.

Or some body shops will do it for you for free.

The preventative part of it is much better than waiting till it's too late," Fisher said.

And you've got a blown tire, dead battery, or overheated engine.

When Cornell can't take a dip...

"I like the air conditioning in my house," Cornell said.

Today the water's done enough.

We just missed setting a new power demand record today. TVA's previous all-time system peak is just over 32,000 megawatts. That was set last July.

TVA expects to reach or exceed that peak each day this week, and just Sunday, power demands reached an all-time record for a Sunday.
We used just more than 29,300 megawatts.

You can keep yourself and TVA's power supply cool by doing some simple things. First turn your A/C up to between 75 and 80 degrees.
Lower your water heater temperature to 120 degrees and turn off unnecessary lights and appliances.

All this applies especially from 2:00 in the afternoon until 8:00 at night.
That's when the most energy's used.


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