State environmental officials predict air quality will reach unhealthy levels on Thursday, especially in southern Rhode Island in the afternoon. The health department recommends limiting outdoor exposure and staying in air-conditioned environments when possible.
Providence and other localities are keeping designated locations open as cooling shelters, including community centers, senior centers and libraries. Public transit, including trolleys and buses, will be free of charge on Thursday throughout the state.
The National Weather Service predicts a high in Providence near 99. The heat index could make it feel as hot as 103.
Heat kills. Children and pets should never be left unattended in vehicles under any circumstances. This is especially true during
warm or hot weather when car interiors can reach lethal temperatures in a matter of minutes.
Take extra precautions if you work or spend time outside. When possible, reschedule strenuous activities to early morning or
evening. Know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Wear light weight and loose fitting clothing when
possible and drink plenty of water.
To reduce risk during outdoor work, the occupational safety and health administration recommends scheduling frequent rest breaks
in shaded or air conditioned environments. Anyone overcome by heat should be moved to a cool and shaded location. Heat stroke
is an emergency – call 9 1 1.