Arkansas outdoor workers’ tips on beating the heat

With all of the heat we’ve been seeing over the last few days we wanted to get some tips on how you can stay safe.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — With all of the heat we’ve been seeing over the last few days, we wanted to get some tips on how you can stay safe if you have to be outside.

“Obviously temperatures are soaring right now and the heat, it does affect us like anyone else,” said Willie Watts.

According to Assistant Fire Chief Willie Watts, they’re having to pick and choose their battles, and training in their big metal facility isn’t one of them right now.

“We try to keep everybody inside right now as much as possible and reserve them for the actual incident rather than have them on the training ground,” said Watts.

But firefighters can’t always hide from the heat, they have to literally walk into it. Assistant Fire Chief Willie Watts said they train their responders to look out for these signs of heat exhaustion and he encourages others to look for them and use these tactics if they find the signs.

“Simple methodology to cool folks down, compress underneath the armpits with cool water or put them in a cold shower, things of that nature. But just generalized elevated heart rate, confusion, dizziness, you gotta watch yourself,” said Watts.

Along with our first responders, there are many others out working in the heat and roofers are one of them.

“We can take temperatures on the roof and I remember one time looking at my thermometer and it was 187 degrees up there,” said Robert Brown.

So you may be wondering how in the world these roofers can stay safe up there in this heat. “You still burn your hands even wearing gloves it’s so hot up there,” said Brown.

According to Robert Brown with Brown Boys Roofing, the answer is protective sun gear and water.

“Every one of them have their own cooler and we have them keep water and Gatorade in there,” said Brown.

To stay cool, the roofers down about half a big case of waters a day.

Here’s a question many have: When it’s this hot, why do we typically see roofers in long sleeves? 

“It is hot outside so what happens when you get all sweaty you get your sleeves and everything wet from your sweat and then it helps keep you cooler,” Brown said. “Then obviously, it keeps you from burning up all the time that way you don’t get skin cancer.”

They also go out to work as early as they can and typically stop by around 3 p.m. If needed, they won’t go back out in a day until the evening.

From 5NEWS, we just want to give a big thank you to all of our outdoor workers going out and working hard to provide for their families!

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