Newark, NJ – July 27, 2023 — Mayor Ras J. Baraka and Department of Health and Community Wellness Director Ketlen Baptiste Alsbrook announced that the City of Newark is activating a Code Red starting today, Thursday, July 27, through Saturday, July 29. Temperatures are expected to rise into the mid-90swith a temperature as high as 97°F and a heat index as high as 105°F.
The Health Department urges Newark residents to take precautions to prevent serious illness that can result from extreme heat, especially among the most vulnerable populations such as seniors and those with chronic health problems or mental health conditions. Vulnerable Newark residents should use air conditioning to stay cool, drink water at regular intervals, and limit strenuous activity, especially during the hottest parts of the day.
The City is reminding residents that there are emergency shelters operating during extremely hot weather that have collaborated with the City to provide overnight sheltering for residents with no address. The Office of Homeless Services has contracted with Bridges, Inc. to provide outreach and engagement services to Newark’s homeless population from 3 p.m. to 11 p.m., seven days a week. Attention is focused on homeless “hot spots” such as Penn Station, city parks, under bridges, and areas off McCarter Highway, etc., especially chronically homeless individuals and those with mental health and substance abuse issues. If you identify homeless individuals in need of services, you can reach Bridges, Inc. at 908-858-7019. For more information regarding sheltering services, contact the shelters listed below or the Office of Homeless Services at (973) 877- 9481, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m.to 4:30 p.m.
CHECK ON THOSEPARTICULARLY VULNERABLE TO THE HEAT
A small, but crucial, gesture can help ensure that we all have a safe and healthy summer. Get to know your neighbors and contact neighbors and relatives—by phone—at least twice a day during heatwaves. Pay special attention to the elderly, the very young, and anyone with a pre-existing medical condition. Citizens should also check in on neighbors who may be isolated from friends and family.
HEALTHAND SAFETY TIPS FOR PROTECTION AGAINST THE HEAT
· Air conditioning is the best way to stay cool when it is hot outside. However, some people do not have an air conditioner or do not turn it on when they need it. Newark residents are encouraged to use air conditioning or fans. If air conditioning is unavailable at a residence, please assist those affected to get to a place where it is available.
· Stay out of the sun. This is the quickest way to become overheated. Also, avoid extreme temperature changes.
· Wear lightweight, bright or light-colored clothing to reflect some of the sun’s energy.
· Drink fluids—water is best—even if you do not feel thirsty. Water is also the safest liquid to drink during heat emergencies. This will help your body to maintain a cooler temperature. If you are on a fluid-restricted diet or taking diuretics, please consult your physician first. Avoid beverages containing alcohol and/or caffeine.
· Eat small, frequent, meals.
· Avoid strenuous activity, especially during the sun’s peak hours, which are from 11 a.m. to 4p.m. If you must perform any strenuous activity, it is advisable to do it during the coolest part of the day, which is in the morning between 4 a.m. and7 a.m.
· If possible, go to an air-conditioned building for several hours during the hottest parts of the day.
· Cool down with a cool bath or shower.
· Cover all exposed skin with an SPF sunscreen (15 or above).
· Wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect your face and head.
· Use extreme caution in deciding to take an infant outside during extreme heat conditions.
· Be careful not to overdress small children, especially newborns, and infants.
· Never leave children or pets in the car.
· The City of Newark will open cooling centers in the five wards when temperatures reach extremely high temperature and humidity levels. You may find the nearest ones by calling (973) 733-4311; go to http://www.newarknj.gov or follow us on Facebook.
FACTS ABOUT HEAT ILLNESS
Heat illness is serious. Prolonged exposure to the heat can be harmful and potentially fatal. The added stress caused by heat can also irritate heart or lung disease even without symptoms of heat illness. The risk for getting sick during a heat wave is increased for people who:
· Do not have or do not use air conditioning.
· Are age 65 or older.
· Have chronic medical or mental health conditions.
· Take certain medications, which can disrupt the regulation of body temperature.
· Are confined to their beds, have trouble with being mobile, or are unable to leave their homes.
· Are overweight.
· Consume alcohol or illegal drugs.
Know the warning signs of heat stress!
· If you or someone you know feels weak or faint, go to a cool place and drink water. Ift here is no improvement, call a doctor or 911.
Please call 911 if you or someone you know begins exhibiting two or more of the following symptoms:
· Hot dry skin OR cold clammy skin.
· Trouble breathing.
· Rapid heartbeat.
· Confusion, disorientation, or dizziness.
· Nausea and vomiting.
KEEPING YOUR PETS SAFE
The summer months can be just as uncomfortable for pets as it is for humans. Pets are affected by humidity as much as the ambient hot temperatures. Follow these tips for keeping them comfortable during the heat advisory.
· Avoid dehydration: Pets can dehydrate quickly, so give them plenty of fresh, clean water.
· Exercise early and late: When the temperature is very high, do not let your dog linger on hot asphalt. Your pet’s body can heat up quickly, and sensitive paw pads can burn.
· Know when your pet is in danger: Symptoms of overheating in pets include excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, stupor, or even collapse. Animals with flat faces like Pugs and Persian cats are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot pant as effectively. They should be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible.
· Never leave a pet inside of a parked car on a hot day. Even with the open windows, extreme temperatures inside a parked car could quickly lead to a fatal heat stroke for your pet.
· Keep cats safe by installing screens in your windows. Unscreened windows pose a real danger to cats, who fall out of them often during summer months.
· Prepare your pet emergency “go bag:” Pet food, water, medications and supplies should always be included in your emergency preparedness plans and “go bags.”
CITY OF NEWARK
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