Staying safe in the summer heat

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WALTON COUNTY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - With temperatures well into the 90s and the heat index reaching up to 105, Walton County Fire Rescue officials want to remind everyone the importance of staying safe in the summer heat.

Knowing the signs of heat exhaustion and heat strokes could help you from falling victim to the unforgiving temperatures.

"A lot of it has to do with the humidity and how hot it is outside," said Walton County Fire Rescue Captain Tim Turner. "You're going to sweat a lot more. It's going to be easier to get dehydrated and become exhausted from heat and possibly have a heat stroke."

Turner says some of the symptoms include feeling faint or dizzy, nauseous, pale, clammy skin.

"Heat exhaustion, you're going to have a rapid, weak pulse. You're going to be sweating a lot. You're skin is going to feel cool and clammy to the touch, you may even have a little bit of nausea, a little bit of vomiting. With a heat stroke, it's a little more serious. You need to call 911 if you have any of these types of symptoms," Turner explained. "Heat stroke, you're probably going to have a pretty bad headache. Your pulse is going to be rapid again, but you're going to be able to feel it really hard this time. It's going to be thumping really good, you'll feel it. You're not going to be sweating at all. Your skin is going to be pale and dry. You're still probably going to have a little bit of nausea and vomiting and you may even go unconscious during a heat stroke."

"You just have to pay attention to what you're doing outside. If you get hot and tired or [start] sweating a lot, you need to start drinking more and take breaks," he added. "If you feel like you have any of these symptoms, heat exhaustion type symptoms, you need to get inside, drink a lot of water, take in some fluids, some Gatorade. Heat stroke, you really need to start cooling that patient down as best you can until people get on scene."

Officials biggest message is to stay in the shade and keep well hydrated.