Staying safe during south Ga. heat wave - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Staying safe during south Ga. heat wave

Lake Loretta is a popular place for many people to walk. But as hot and humid as it has been, that can be dangerous. (Source: WALB) Lake Loretta is a popular place for many people to walk. But as hot and humid as it has been, that can be dangerous. (Source: WALB)
Albany resident Marilyn Ellis (Source: WALB) Albany resident Marilyn Ellis (Source: WALB)
Dougherty County EMS Supervisor Sam Allen (Source: WALB) Dougherty County EMS Supervisor Sam Allen (Source: WALB)
Young children and the elderly are most at-risk to the heat (Source: WALB) Young children and the elderly are most at-risk to the heat (Source: WALB)
ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

Lake Loretta is a popular place for many people to walk. But as hot and humid as it has been, that can be dangerous. 

One avid walker said that she makes sure she doesn't overheat.

"It can happen to me, it can happen to anybody," said resident Marilyn Ellis.

Ellis, 69, was shocked to hear that a woman in Albany died from the heat. 

"It kind of puts me on alert that I need to pay attention to that," explained Ellis. 

Ellis has a long history of walking. About two months ago she started back walking the path along Lake Loretta. 

"I walk at a pace that is comfortable for me," said Ellis. "I'm trying to build up my pace where I can walk around the lake in less time. But it's more important that I'm comfortable because since I'm older I do have issues." 

Ellis walks early in the morning or late in the evening because it's much cooler and she never walks during the hottest time of the day. 

In fact, she had a heat scare of her own. 

"Oh gosh I was just in my thirties then. I had been taking a diuretic. And I got out and I thought I was going to fall out," explained Ellis. "I was in a foot race and I thought I was going to fall out. And um, it was really scary. 

On hot days, Dougherty County EMS Supervisor Sam Allen said that people should watch for key symptoms such as severe sweating, light-headedness and dizziness.

If you someone that has stopped sweating and you're still out in the extreme heat," said Allen. "You need to go ahead and get them into a shade area. If they're not feeling well call 911 immediately."

Allen stressed the importance of drinking plenty of liquids and staying in the shade. Advice Marilyn Ellis follows.

"I'm just really grateful that they allow the public to come out here and walk," said Ellis. 

Allen said that young children and the elderly are most at-risk to the heat. 

He said people should watch weather forecasts, pay attention to their body's warning signs and always have someone outside with them.

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