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Record-breaking heat proves dangerous to some

By Sandra Yi | Posted - Jun 29th, 2013 @ 10:27pm


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COTTONWOOD HEIGHTS — In temperatures of 105 degrees fahrenheit, firefighters say they have responded to several calls of people suffering from heat exhaustion.

Utahns headed outside to events and water parks across the Salt Lake Valley, despite the record-breaking temperature for this time of year. Firefighters said Saturday, that they received four calls in 30 minutes of people suffering from heat exhaustion at the Warped Tour music festival. They said some have been taken to the hospital as a result. At the Taylorsville Dayzz celebration, firefighters treated 10 people, including at 12-year-old boy.

"People are having signs and symptoms of weakness, fatigue, dizziness," said Salt Lake City Fire Department Capt. Rick Black. "They're fairly sweaty, pale, and then they generally go down."

Paramedics say, heat exhaustion, if not treated, can turn to heat stroke, which is fatal. They say, if you're feeling tired, dizzy or weak, cool yourself down and drink water. They recommend, sipping, not gulping down water.

Their biggest concern on a record-breaking hot day is for kids and the elderly. The fire department said people should check on their loved ones, neighbors and friends — especially if they are elderly and don't have air conditioning.

Nobody should be left in a vehicle, children or adults, officials said.

The heat has also proved a challenge to firefighters who are fighting four active fires across the state, at least three of which were started by lightning.

Meantime, Utah Department of Transportation closed the ramp onto southbound I-215 at 3300 South due to the extreme temperatures buckling the road. Utah Highway Patrol expected road buckling to continue to be a problem throughout the summer. UDOT said it usually takes about 4 hours to repair the road after these incidents.

The heat in Salt Lake was not the only record-breaking heat in the west. Phoenix hit 119 degrees by mid-afternoon, breaking the record for June 29 that was set in 1994. Las Vegas matched its record of 117 degrees.

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