MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO/AP) – Health officials are urging Minnesotans to take precautions in dealing with high temperatures and humidity.
Monday’s temperatures reached into the 90s making it the hottest day of the year.
The National Weather Service says the humidity will make temperatures feel like 100 to 110 degrees Monday across much of Minnesota. The weather service issued an excessive heat warning for Anoka, Washington, Dakota, Ramsey, Hennepin, Scott and Carver counties.
The temperatures combined with the humidity brought the heat index into the triple digits, and around the Twin Cities, people made sure to get out and enjoy the summer temperatures.
At Lake Calhoun, the sunbathers were out early.
Alli Shurilla, of Minneapolis, and her friends planned to spend all day soaking up the sun. After a long winter and cold summer she wouldn’t mind it if the extreme heat stuck around for the rest of the summer.
“It’s still too cold for me and I wish we had more days like this,” Shurilla said.
But others were already thinking of the air conditioning.
David Basie, of Minneapolis, and his two daughters spent time by the water in the morning but escaped the late afternoon heat.
“There’s enjoyment and then there’s extremes. I think this is getting on the edge of what most people would want, but it’s hard to complain after a winter like we had. But we can find a way to complain about the weather either way,” Basie said.
The extreme heat also carries a health risk.
At the Aquatennial Tennis Classic, players powered through the heat and humidity.
“It’s tennis, in tennis you’ve got to be prepared for whatever environment you’re in,” said Andy Ray, a tennis player.
But organizers of the tournament didn’t want to put anyone at risk. Tournament coordinator Lisa Mushett, says they made small changes due to the heat. They lengthened the breaks, provided more water, cool towels and moved the seats throughout the day to keep players in the shade.
“We’ve had it happen where we’ve had the hot, humid weather, so we take precautions,” Mushett said.
But away from the court, there are those who don’t take proper precautions.
Regions Hospital Doctor Rebecca Gardner said the emergency room usually admits patients who’ve overdone it in the heat. Gardner said the humidity makes it worse.
“There’s a lot of moisture in the air, already, and we can’t sweat to get rid of heat as easily,” Gardner said.
Water, rest and shade are the best ways to remain cool when the temperatures rise to the triple digits.
“Try to stay ahead of it rather than getting behind and playing catch up,” Gardner said.
As of Monday afternoon, area hospitals admitted less than a dozen patients for heat-related issues.
Health officials urge residents to check on neighbors who may be vulnerable to the heat.
Forecasters say there’s a risk of severe thunderstorms across most of the state beginning Monday afternoon.
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