Dangerous Oklahoma heat keeps paramedics, first responders busy

The dangerous heat across Oklahoma has kept paramedics and first responders busy.Though spring doesn’t officially end until June 21, the summer heat didn’t get the memo and for some, it has already turned into an emergency.”Heat is undefeated against those who are unprepared,” said Adam Paluka, Chief Public Affairs Officer at EMSA.117 degrees was the maximum heat index in Oklahoma on Saturday and i112 in the metro. Paluka said the sudden spike and first heat wave caught some off guard.”There is usually that kind of shock to the system and people just aren’t prepared. They haven’t pre-hydrated, they haven’t taken the proper precautions to be ready,” Paluka said.Of the 13 calls since Friday, nine people had to be transported to the hospital. Things can go from just needing some fluids and shade to deadly serious fast.”There’s two different kinds of heat-related illnesses that we see most of the time. The first is heat exhaustion. So that’s when you’re maybe nauseous a little lethargic and body aches, headache, might have that dry mouth. Heat stroke is a life-threatening emergency…One major warning sign for heat stroke is if you ever stopped sweating when you stopped sweating,” Paluka said.Once a heat stroke occurs, you will need emergency care. To emphasize the danger of heat, we take tornadoes seriously in Oklahoma and rightly so. We had 63 tornadoes last year but thankfully only one injury.Meanwhile, EMSA responded to 447 heat-related calls in 2021 alone.The bottom line is to pre-hydrate, take frequent breaks and listen to your body.

The dangerous heat across Oklahoma has kept paramedics and first responders busy.

Though spring doesn’t officially end until June 21, the summer heat didn’t get the memo and for some, it has already turned into an emergency.

“Heat is undefeated against those who are unprepared,” said Adam Paluka, Chief Public Affairs Officer at EMSA.

117 degrees was the maximum heat index in Oklahoma on Saturday and i112 in the metro. Paluka said the sudden spike and first heat wave caught some off guard.

“There is usually that kind of shock to the system and people just aren’t prepared. They haven’t pre-hydrated, they haven’t taken the proper precautions to be ready,” Paluka said.

Of the 13 calls since Friday, nine people had to be transported to the hospital. Things can go from just needing some fluids and shade to deadly serious fast.

“There’s two different kinds of heat-related illnesses that we see most of the time. The first is heat exhaustion. So that’s when you’re maybe nauseous a little lethargic and body aches, headache, might have that dry mouth. Heat stroke is a life-threatening emergency…One major warning sign for heat stroke is if you ever stopped sweating when you stopped sweating,” Paluka said.

Once a heat stroke occurs, you will need emergency care.

To emphasize the danger of heat, we take tornadoes seriously in Oklahoma and rightly so. We had 63 tornadoes last year but thankfully only one injury.

Meanwhile, EMSA responded to 447 heat-related calls in 2021 alone.

The bottom line is to pre-hydrate, take frequent breaks and listen to your body.

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