BALTIMORE (WJZ) — If you thought Friday was hot, just wait until Saturday.

Baltimore’s health commissioner has declared a Code Red Extreme Heat Day for Saturday, the first such declaration of 2019 in the city.

Officials said the declaration, which will result in a number of cooling centers opening across the city, is being made out of an abundance of caution.

“Heat waves can be silent killers, especially affecting those with limited economic means or significant chronic illness,” the Baltimore City Health Commissioner said.

Cooling Centers Opening Due To Excessive Heat

The heat index, or how warm it actually feels outside, is expected to top 100 degrees Saturday. That, combined with poor air quality and high humidity, could increase the risk of heat-related health issues, the health department said.

Other area counties have also opened cooling centers.

“If I go running then I go really early in the morning or really late at night,” Deepak Kaul said.

Lisa Kirkland is an emergency room specialist at Sinai Hospital. She wants people to be aware of classic heat stroke.

“Where people are out at the park or they’re playing and then all of a sudden they collapse,” she said. “They’re skin dry, they’re not sweating, those are real danger signs. If you stop sweating, you need to seek help immediately.”

For people who have to work outside, Kirkland said that taking regular 20-minute breaks are a must to stay safe.

“If it gets too hot, then go inside to one of the pavilions and then cool off and come back outside and do your job,” she said.

Other things you can to do prepare for the heat is make sure you invest in a fan, avoid alcohol and caffeine, eat well-balanced meals and of course drink lots of water.

“If you’re just feeling kind of light headed and you kind of feel sick, that’s your body telling you to get me out of this heat, get me something to drink and let’s just cool off,” Kirkland said.

For more information on the Code Red, you can call 311.

Rachel Menitoff

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