Safety advisory for storm clean-up

Debbie RolenStaff Writer

July 11, 2012

The Department of Health and Human Services is cautioning local residents who will be continuing outdoor storm clean-up efforts about heat-related illness.

Heat exhaustion symptoms include: heavy sweating, weakness, clammy skin, fast weak pulse, nausea or vomiting, muscle cramps, headache, lightheadedness and fainting.

To stay healthy working outdoors in excessive heat: drink two to four cups of water every hour-don’t wait until you are thirsty; avoid alcohol or liquids containing large amounts of sugar; wear sunscreen; avoid midday heat; wear brimmed hat and loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing; spend time in air-conditioned buildings during work and after work; take breaks to cool off and drink water. Seek medical attention IMMEDIATELY if you or a co-worker has symptoms of heat related illness.

Using gas or charcoal grills, lanterns or generators inside or near your home may allow carbon monoxide fumes to enter the home causing a dangerous situation. Symptoms include: headache, dizziness, weakness, nausea, vomiting, chest pain and confusion. If you think you may be experiencing carbon monoxide poisoning, leave your house immediately and call 911.

Some food may not be safe to eat and safe water is a must for drinking, cooking and personal hygiene. Use bottled, boiled or treated water. Throw away food with unusual odor, color or texture, perishable foods such as meat, poultry, fish, eggs and leftovers when power has been off four hours or more. Freezers unopened and full will keep 48 hours; 24 hours if half full. If in doubt, throw it out.

For more information, call the Logan County Health Department at 304-792-8630.