After the highest heat index of the year, 53 degrees Celsius, was reported in Dagupan City, Pangasinan on March 17, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) warned the public on Wednesday, March 23, to prepare for hotter days ahead.
PAGASA describes ‘heat index’ as a human discomfort index that calculates the “apparent” temperature, or the temperature that people perceive or experience as impacting their bodies.
The following regions are classified as “danger”:
- Virac, Catanduanes – 46°C
- Dagupan City – 45°C
- Clark Airport, Pampanga – 43°C
- San Jose, Occidental Mindoro – 43°C
- Sangley Point, Cavite – 43°C
- Itbayat, Batanes – 42°C
- NAIA, Pasay City – 42°C
- Zamboanga City – 42°C
The heat index is the combination effect experienced by the body from the real temperature and surrounding humidity, according to Ana Solis, chief of the climate monitoring and prediction unit.
In a press conference on Wednesday, Solis said that the weather is predicted to become even hotter historically.
According to the Department of Health, Filipinos should expect warmer days that can produce heat stroke, the most serious kind of heat illness in which the body overheats and cannot cool down.
Below are some advises from the Department of Health on how to avoid heat-related illness:
- Spend as little time as possible outside. If at all possible, avoid being in the sun after 9 a.m. until 3 p.m.
- Wear a wide-brimmed hat and long-sleeved clothing if you must remain outside. To protect your skin, use sunscreen.
- Make sure you drink plenty of water. Tea, coffee, soda, and alcohol should all be avoided.
- Allowing your body to face abrupt temperature swings is not a good idea. – WhatALife!