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Understanding AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature will make a significant difference for vulnerable populations, pets this weekend

July 20, 2019, 4:05:28 PM EDT

As a heat wave unfolds over the Midwest and Northeast, AccuWeather warns people to consider not only the temperature on their mobile phones and home thermometers, but the AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature as well. Understanding these measures can be the difference between life and death for small children, the elderly, vulnerable populations and pets.

AccuWeather’s RealFeel Temperature is the only index that considers all the factors that describe exactly how the air feels outside. Other indices only account for temperature and one other factor. The AccuWeather RealFeel Temperature index not only includes humidity, as other indices do, but also considers cloud cover, sun intensity, wind speed, precipitation and many other factors.

Boston heat

Baltimore Orioles outfielder Keon Broxton douses himself with water while taking a break between fielding and batting practice prior to a baseball game against the Boston Red Sox, Friday, July 19, 2019, in Baltimore. A heat wave is hitting Baltimore and heat advisories have been set ahead of a hot weekend. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

While AccuWeather expert meteorologists are predicting high air temperatures of 97 F in New York Ciy on Sunday, they are also cautioning that the AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature will approach a dangerous 110 F.

The difference between the AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature and the actual air temperature range will have a significant potential impact on those who are most susceptible to heat and heat stroke. What many people don’t realize is that the temperature reading that is typically provided is an air temperature in the shade, and yet people are not often in the shade.

Conversely, the AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature takes into account the heat of the sun, which can effectively make the temperature about 15 degrees or more higher, particularly at this time of year. Having access to this information will assist families in making the best decisions to navigating the heat expected this weekend, such as determining whether to go out or stay in to prevent heat stroke or other catastrophic heat-related incidents.

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Between 1988 and 2018, more people on average in the U.S. died from heat-related causes than from any other weather condition. In the summer, dehydration, heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heatstroke are among the heat-related illnesses that result in an average of 658 people a year in the U.S. dying due to extreme heat, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

With temperatures set to rise to historic measures this weekend, AccuWeather urges people to use the AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature Guide to keep children and families safe this summer.

The AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperature Guide offers 18 different RealFeel ranges with explanation on the meaning and impact for each in terms of health, safety and comfort, along with suggestions for what clothing and activities are best suited for different types of weather conditions and what dangers may exist.

“Heat kills a lot of people, and the elderly, the very young and vulnerable people are particularly sensitive to extremes of temperature,” said Dr. Joel N. Myers, AccuWeather Founder and CEO.

“The temperature and other indices do not tell the whole story of how weather conditions make us feel. Other weather variables in addition to temperature, such as sunlight, humidity, wind, precipitation and a multitude of other factors, can impact our comfort or discomfort outside and may even cause harm or illness.”

AccuWeather’s analysis found that the following cities will face a blistering heat wave this weekend.

Sun RF July 20

AccuWeather advises caution during periods of extreme temperatures, especially when AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperatures reach at least 108 or even lower temperatures for vulnerable populations, such as the elderly.

Until the pattern breaks, strenuous physical exercise and manual labor should be limited. If these activities must take place, they should be avoided during the hottest part of the day and frequent breaks from the heat are highly recommended.

Further, AccuWeather advises people to remain hydrated and indoors in air conditioning, increase the intake of non-alcoholic fluids and frequently check on young children and the elderly. Avoid walking pets and barefoot on paved and concrete areas during the late morning and afternoon hours as these surfaces can become hot enough to cause severe burns to paws and feet. Heed the warnings of public officials and emergency managers who have made cooling centers available for those in need.

“In addition to extreme daytime heat this weekend, people will see little relief during the nighttime hours," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist and COO Evan Myers said. "In many cities impacted by the heat wave, the air temperature will not drop below 80 degrees all night. This is highly unusual and will add to people’s discomfort and inability to cool off.”

For decades, AccuWeather has been on the forefront of saving lives, protecting property and improving people’s lives globally by providing the most weather forecasts with proven Superior Accuracy ™ and warning of potentially dangerous weather conditions and risks to health and safety. By educating the public on the importance of AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperatures during this weekend’s heat wave, AccuWeather hopes to have a positive impact on people’s health, safety, well-being and comfort.

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