June 21, 2012
Summer starts with scorcher
Temperatures hit 90s Wednesday with more of the same today
The first day of summer in Cortland County was a sizzler.
It was well over 90 degrees by Wednesday afternoon, and the first real high heat of the year on the longest day of the year was an apt way to officially kick off the summer.
But the National Weather Service is not calling this a heat wave. Weather experts in Binghamton said they need at least three consecutive days of high heat for a heat wave.
Today was supposed to be the second round of 90-degree heat, but Friday is predicted to drop into the upper 70s.
Meanwhile, people around the community were out coping with the Wednesday heat in a number of ways.
Sherry Davis stood outside Footie’s Freez on Route 13 in Cortlandville after ordering a Pina Colada flurry.
“I came to get gas (nearby) and decided to get an ice cream for lunch because it’s so hot,” Davis said.
At Yaman Park, swimmers took to the water and sunbathers rubbed on sunscreen.
Lifeguard Chris Handelmann said he uses SPF 30 because he gets burned with anything lower.
Handelmann added he also drinks about a gallon of water daily.
“Seeing everybody else having a good time makes it worthwhile,” Handelmann said, adding that on a day like Wednesday the beach area could get about 900 visitors throughout the day.
While the natural thing to do on a hot day is crank on the air conditioner and fans to their fullest, Cortland Fire Chief Chuck Glover warned people to be careful not to overload their circuits.
Connecting too many appliances without an appropriate surge protector is the source of many electrical fires this time of year, fire officials say.
Cortland County Health officials also urged seniors to take special precautions if they went outside.
Dr. Stuart Gillim, county Health Department medical advisor, issued an advisory for seniors that urged they take cool showers, wear loose clothing, increase fluid intake and stay in air conditioning when possible.
Seniors are less capable of regulating their body temperature and thus more at risk of dehydration, Gillim said.
Emergency management officials in Cayuga County issued a heat warning Wednesday, urging anyone working outside to stay hydrated. Other agencies, including the American Red Cross, issued similar advice.
The National Weather Service says all forecasts point to this year being a normal summer in terms of heat for the rest of June, into July and August.
Forecasters said the weather so far this year has been typical for the season around Central New York, apart from a few stray weeks when the days were hotter or cooler than usual.
Staff reporter Anthony Borrelli contributed to this article.
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