By Molly Daly
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The next two days are forecast to be miserably hot, with a high of 95, compounded by humidity that will make it feel as if it’s more than 100 degrees. The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for Philadelphia and surrounding communities through 8 p.m. Monday. That has prompted the Philadelphia Corporation for Aging to activate its Heatline.
The PCA Heatline is open until midnight Sunday evening, offering advice that can prevent an emergency.
“We encourage people to wear as little clothing as they can,” says Heatline supervisor Jen Norman, “hydrate throughout the day with water, if they can, to get a cool shower to keep their body temperature lower.”
The call center has trained staffers on hand, including nurses from the Philadelphia Health Department, answering questions about how to deal with the heat, and how to detect the signs of heat stress. Also, mobile relief teams are ready to respond to situations that need intervention.
Norman says expecting a fan to cool down a closed up house could be a fatal mistake.
“It is absolutely dangerous,” she says. “It creates a convection oven effect.”
On Monday, the Heatline will take calls from 8:30am to 8pm. The number to call is 215-765-9040.
Meanwhile, the PCA urges neighbors, friends and relatives to look in on those who are especially vulnerable to heat: the elderly, people with chronic medical conditions and vulnerable folks who live alone. If you know someone who fits that description, PCA says you’re welcome to call the Heatline on their behalf.
Heatline staffers can provide information about places to escape the heat — air conditioned locations and year-round senior services, but the Heatline does not provide fans or air conditioners.