LUMBERTON — With temperatures expected to bump up against triple-digits in Robeson County today and throughout the week, residents are being warned of the danger that excessive heat can bring and advised to drink plenty of fluids and find a cool spot.
A heat advisory and a hazardous weather outlook issued by the National Weather Service are in effect for Robeson County and surrounding areas through 7 p.m. today. A heat advisory means “hot temperatures and high humidity will create a situation in which heat illnesses are possible,” the alert says.
The high for today is forecast for 96.
“Temperatures will certainly be in the upper 90s and near 100s,” said Dave Loewenthal, forecaster for the National Weather Service in Wilmington. “The heat index will probably be closer to 101 at times.”
Forecasts for the week show today, Wednesday and Thursday with a high of 96 degrees with Friday having a high of 98. Lows for each day are in the 70s.
Loewenthal said people who work outside should take extra caution and be sure to stay hydrated with Gatorade or water and find shade when possible. He also recommended residents cut down on alcohol consumption.
The Center for Disease Control recommends that in high heat, people stay indoors as much as possible and wear lightweight, light-colored and loose-fitting clothing.
The CDC also reminds residents that infants, young children, the elderly, people with mental and physical disabilities and people with existing medical problems like heart disease or high blood pressure and at a greater risk of suffering from a heat-related illness than others.
Pets are also at high risk for heat-related illnesses as they are often left outside or in hot cars. The Humane Society of the United States recommends that animals not be left in a car for even a minute, even if the air-conditioning is on.
“On a warm day, temperatures inside a vehicle can rise rapidly to dangerous levels,” the website says. “On an 85-degree day, for example, the temperature inside a car with the windows opened slightly can reach 102 degrees within 10 minutes.”
In addition to scorching temperatures, afternoon thunderstorms are in the forecast throughout the week
The county has been hit with numerous thunderstorms in recent days, totaling 4.28 inches of rain, 3.74 of which fell on Saturday alone.
Thunderstorms and thundershowers can result in damaging winds and large hail. To stay safe, stock up on supplies in case of a power outage and move to a sturdy building or car. Stay away from bodies of water. If you’re caught outdoors during a thunderstorm, find a place clear of fences, trees and poles.
Robeson County residents can stay on top of severe whether by signing up for CodeRED. The ultra high-speed telephone communication service sends out phone, text or email emergency notifications based on address. To sign up, visit co.robeson.nc.us/code-red-information.