The heat is on: 90s welcome July 2014

EUGENE, Ore. - July will start off hot in the Willamette Valley before more moderate temperatures take hold for the holiday weekend.

Eugene is forecast to hit 93F on Tuesday, much warmer than the average 78F for the first day of July.

The record high for July 1 was 98, set back in 1967.

"Temperatures on Tuesday will be close to or possibly exceed the hottest temperatures of the year so far in many locations, most of which had occurred back in mid-May," the National Weather Service in Portland said.

"Even the coast will be very warm on Tuesday," forecasters added. "Many coastal locations will push up into the 80s, and a few into the upper 80s or close to 90 degrees."

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Extreme heat is the deadliest kind of weather, killing more Americans on average each year than hurricanes, lightning, tornadoes, floods and earthquakes combined, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

"Be sure to stay hydrated on Tuesday, and avoid extra exertion during the peak of the heat in the afternoon and early evening," forecasters said. "Do not leave children or pets unattended in cars."

People who work outdoors or in hot conditions are at risk of heat illness.

"Water, rest, and shade are the three things to remember," said Penny Wolf-McCormick, health enforcement manager for Oregon OSHA. "Employers should ensure workers are taking water breaks throughout the day and provide shade to give their body time to recover."

From 2009 through 2013, 33 people received benefits through Oregon's worker compensation system for heat-related illnesses. The majority of claims each year occur in July.

People also run into trouble trying to cool off, the Weather Service said.

"Many fatalities that have occurred over the years during episodes of hot weather occur on area rivers," forecasters warned. "While river temps have warmed considerably since spring, continue to use caution and wear life jackets if you are involved in recreation on area rivers."Forecasters encourage the elderly and others susceptible to heat illness to watch weather forecasts as temperatures heat up this week and weekend

Symptoms of Heat-Induced Ailments

  • Dehydration - thirst, less frequent urination
  • Prickly heat bumps - irritating skin rash
  • Cramps - painful muscle contractions
  • Edema - swelling of hands and feet
  • Exhaustion / Fatigue - characterized by clammy skin, paleness, dizziness, nausea, fever, and headache

Symptoms of Heat Stroke

Seek immediate medical help if you or someone else develops the following symptoms. Heat Stroke is the most severe heat illness and is a life-threatening situation.

  • Lethargy, sluggishness
  • Rapid heart rate and breathing
  • Confusion, disorientation, agitation, irritability
  • High body temperature
  • Intense muscle aches, fever, diarrhea or nausea
  • Convulsing, fainting, seizure, loss of consciousness


Caring for a Heat Stroke Victim Until Help Arrives

While you are waiting for help to arrive you can assist the person by doing the following:

  • Get the person out of the heat to a cooler environment. Take them indoors if possible.
  • Fan the person with a newspaper or towel to cool the body.
  • Loosen or remove clothing and sprinkle the skin lightly with water.
  • Elevate feet to direct blood flow back toward the head.
  • If available, apply icepacks to the groin area or armpits.

Risk of Heat Related Illness

Some people are at greater risk than others to suffer heat-related illness:

  • Infants and young children
  • People aged 65 and older
  • Those persons who are physically ill, or have heart disease or high blood pressure
  • Those persons who must work in / wear protective equipment: helmets, respirators, heavy clothing

How to Beat the Heat - The Do's and Don'ts:


  • Use air conditioners or spend time in air-conditioned locations such as malls and libraries
  • Use portable electric fans to exhaust hot air from rooms or draw in cooler air
  • Take a cool bath or shower
  • Minimize direct exposure to the sun
  • Stay hydrated - regularly drink water or other nonalcoholic fluids
  • Eat light, cool, easy-to-digest foods such as fruit or salads
  • Wear loose fitting, light-colored clothes
  • Check on older, sick, or frail people who may need help responding to the heat
  • Limit exercise to moderate activity and rest whenever necessary
  • Exercise during cooler periods of the day such as the early morning or late evening hours
  • Consult your health care provider or pharmacist to see which medicines are affected by excessive heat conditions
  • Know the symptoms of excessive heat exposure and the appropriate responses.


  • Direct the flow of portable electric fans toward yourself when room temperature is hotter than 90f
  • Leave children, the elderly or pets alone in cars for any amount of time
  • Drink alcohol, or drinks that contain caffeine or large amounts of sugar to try to stay cool
  • Eat heavy, hot, or hard-to-digest foods
  • Wear heavy, dark clothing
  • Exert yourself excessively

Avoiding heat-related problems at work

Here are some tips for preventing a heat-related illness:

  • Perform the heaviest, most labor-intensive work during the coolest part of the day.
  • Use the buddy system (work in pairs) to monitor the heat.
  • Drink plenty of cool water (one small cup every 15 to 20 minutes).
  • Wear light, loose-fitting, breathable clothing (such as cotton).
  • Take frequent short breaks in cool, shaded areas - allow your body to cool down.
  • Avoid eating large meals before working in hot environments.
  • Avoid caffeine and alcoholic beverages (these make the body lose water and increase the risk of heat illnesses).

Employers can calculate the heat index for their worksite with the federal OSHA heat stress app for mobile phones.