The official high temperature Thursday in Coeur d’Alene was 100 degrees, a number not seen on the thermometer in these parts since Aug. 13, 2015.
While the temperature didn’t rise to 102 degrees, as predicted, it was still a hot one.
“The smoke is holding the numbers down,” said Press Meteorologist Randy Mann. “Without the haze and smoke, we probably would have matched the record.”
The record for Aug. 9 was 105 degrees, set in 1980.
People were feeling the heat Thursday, and at times, suffering from it.
First responders throughout the area responded to calls throughout the day for people suffering from heat exhaustion and dehydration.
Everyone can expect more of the same today, when the temperature could be record-breaking.
A high near 104 degrees is predicted for today in the Coeur d’Alene area, according to the National Weather Service.
Luke Emerson, trauma services clinical navigator for Kootenai Health, provided some symptoms to watch out for when dealing with the heat.
Patients who are overheated or have heat exhaustion usually show up at the hospital’s emergency department with cramps — in the legs, arms and stomach — nausea, vomiting, sweating, headaches, irregular heartbeat and lightheadedness.
“With heat stroke, you will get trembling, weakness, lack of coordination, memory loss, and sweating may or may not be present,” Emerson said. “If someone is developing heat cramps and exhaustion, they need to be put into the shade out of the sun immediately.”
The key to avoiding becoming ill from the heat is hydration.
“It’s important to replace water loss,” Emerson said.
Through sweating, a person can lose more than 1 quart of water per hour, he said.
“Drink small amounts of water frequently, maintain good physical condition, establish a good rest/work schedule by working outside in cooler hours and avoiding working in direct sunlight,” Emerson said. “Use proper clothing — loose and the least amount when possible — eat meals and snacks, plus water, and of course, use sunscreen and UV protective clothing.”
Other risk factors for heat injuries can be dehydration caused by drinking alcohol and caffeine, instead of water and sports drinks like Gatorade and PowerAde.