Heat wave ahead: New Yorkers warned to prepare for sweltering temps

ALBANY, N.Y. — High temperatures are moving in the area Friday and are expected to stick around for days, introducing the possibility of a dangerous heat wave.

The city is warning New Yorkers to take care and check on elderly or at-risk neighbors as the mercury is forecast to climb into the 90s and stay there throughout the weekend.

A heat advisory is in effect until 12 p.m. Sunday for the five boroughs, northeast New Jersey and Nassau County, according to the National Weather Service (NWS).

An excessive heat watch also remains in effect from Sunday afternoon through Monday evening, the NWS reported.

The advisory warns of heat index values in the upper 90s, with the highest in the mid- to late-afternoon hours. Some areas could reach 100-degree heat indices, the NWS said.

Actual temperatures will be in the mid to upper 90s in northeast New Jersey, New York City, Nassau County and the lower Hudson Valley, but the humidity will make it feel even more oppressive.

Such advisories are issued when the combination of heat and humidity is expected to make it feel like it is 95 to 99 degrees for two or more consecutive days, or when that combination will make it feel like 100 to 104 degrees for any length of time, the weather agency said.

While Friday and Saturday will be sweltering, Sunday is looking to be the hottest day, with heat indices over 100 degrees.

Cooling centers have been opened for New York City dwellers looking for relief from the heat, and the city has extended hours at intermediate and Olympic-sized public pools.

On the state level, the director the New York State Office for the Aging is warning senior citizens and their caregivers about high temperatures as a heat wave moves in.

Agency leader Greg Olsen said Friday that hot weather can be particularly dangerous for older adults, especially those who live alone, are low-income or have chronic health conditions.

Officials recommend staying inside in air-conditioned buildings and avoiding strenuous activity to decrease the risk of heat-related illness. Other tips include drinking lots of water and eating meals that don't require a stove or oven to prepare. Officials also encourage people to ensure pets have enough food and water.

Those are increased risk during this hot stretch are people who do not have or do not use air conditions and also:

  • Are 65 years or older;
  • Have chronic medical, mental health, or cognitive/developmental conditions;
  • Take certain medications, which can disrupt the regulation of body temperature;
  • Are confined to their beds, have limited mobility, or are unable to leave their homes;
  • Are obese; or
  • Misuse alcohol or drugs.

Prolonged exposure to the heat can be harmful and potentially deadly, officials said.

Symptoms of heat stress include:

  • Hot dry skin.
  • Trouble breathing.
  • Rapid heartbeat.
  • Confusion, disorientation, or dizziness.
  • Nausea and vomiting.