In the sun? Then you're HOT - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

In the sun? Then you're HOT

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By Karen Cohilas - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) –  Many of you may be doing all you can to spend most of your time indoors, but that's not an option for some folks. People who make their living outdoors have to deal with the oppressive heat if they want a paycheck.

Rodney Webb has been showing up on rooftops across South Georgia for 35 years now. "It's one of the extremely hottest jobs that you can do," he said.

No matter the weather, when jobs are available, Webb and his crew report for duty. "We take what we can get, no matter the temperature, doesn't matter."

"Well, we just get up and start at 6 o'clock in the morning before daybreak and we try to knock off after lunch or 2 o'clock or so to beat some of the heat," said Rodney Webb of  Webb Roofing.

But this type of heat is impossible to beat, especially on a roof.  "You probably can add 15-20 degrees as far as being on the roof. Those shingles are very very hot, even to touch you sometimes got to wear gloves so you don't burn your hands," said Ken Drawdy of Drawdy Roofing.

Drawdy says he makes sure his crews take lots of breaks and keep fluids in them so they don't overdo it. "It's just so hot, it's amazing they even come to work some days."

The roofers we spoke to say they're not sure there's another job that stacks up to this one.

And they aren't sure there's been another summer like this. "We've had some hot summers in the past, but this one's been pretty rough," said Webb.

A rough day working on the roof, in the dog days of summer. 

Both roofing companies we talked to today said the key to trying to beat the heat is starting jobs early in the day and knocking off before the hottest part of the day.

Extreme heat can kill you by pushing the your body beyond its limits.

One of the reason it is so dangerous right now is the heat index. The heat index combines air temperature and relative humidity to calculate the temperature we actually feel.

We normally cool ourselves by sweating, which evaporates and carries heat away from the body.

But high relative humidity reduces the evaporation rate, meaning we retain more heat than if the air was dry.



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