CENTRAL TEXAS — If you step outside you can certainly tell that summer has come to the Lone Star State.
It's definitely hot outside which might be a welcome change after all the rain lately but, it could also be dangerous.
Heat indexes are already ensuring that it feels like more than 100 degrees outside and that means that extra steps need to be taken to make sure that you are staying safe in the hot weather.
After being cooped up because of COVID, families are enjoying the open air despite the heat.
”Summertime they just want to stay inside, play on the phone and watch TV all day so I came out to do something fun,” said Heather Hensley, who took her kids to a splash pad in Killeen.
With the heat index putting temperatures over 100 degrees, picking the right outdoor activity can be challenging.
Not only do you have to think of yourself, but you also have to think about how kids handle the heat.
”It’s really hot today and we went to about 3 other parks and it’s just too hot for that, so we decided to come to the splash pad and it’s free and fun.” said Hensley.
You also have to be careful in this heat if you work outdoors especially doing manual labor.
”We definitely stay hydrated and take breaks. If we’re lucky enough, we’ll get some shade like under this tree. The main thing is that we stay hydrated and drink plenty of water,” said Andres Ruiz Jr., a contractor building a fence in Killeen.
Making sure to remember to drink water and take breaks is something that can be easy to forget to do.
”Sometimes you just want to go after it and you forget. You get caught up in the moment and you want to knock things out so remembering to stay hydrated is one of the most difficult parts,” said Ruiz Jr.
Medical professionals say that how quickly the heat has come makes it even more dangerous.
”We haven’t had any time to acclimate. We haven’t go through a steady increase in temperatures so our bodies are not ready for this. We need to be really careful going into this, staying inside, staying out of the heat in the middle of the day and just exercising caution,” said Dr. John Myers, family medicine doctor at Baylor Scott & White.
It is important to stay hydrated and out of the direct sunlight as much as possible as well as look for signs such as headaches that can lead to serious heat-related injuries.