Sweat city: Five Boroughs under heat advisory with temperatures expected to hit 90s this week

People cool off themselves on a fountain during a heat wave in New York City
New Yorkers will be looking for ways to cool off this week as temperatures are expected to soar into the 90s, with heat indexes as high as 105º, between Tuesday and Thursday, Aug. 10-12.
REUTERS/Jeenah Moon

After a couple of weeks of cooler temperatures and plenty of rain, sweltering summer heat is expected to return to New York City starting Tuesday.

According to a National Weather Service advisory, the Five Boroughs are about to experience another heat wave, with temperatures soaring into the 90s between Tuesday and Thursday, Aug. 10-12. But it’s not a dry heat; higher humidity will send the heat index up to as high as 105 degrees at points on Wednesday and Thursday.

Sticky summer heat is unpleasant for everyone, but for some folks, it’s downright dangerous. Most heat-related deaths in the summer are the result of overexposure to heat in homes that lack air conditioning.

Dehydration and heat exhaustion or heat stroke can prove fatal if not treated right away. Symptoms of heat-related illness include hot dry skin, trouble breathing, a rapid heartbeat, confusion/disorientation/dizziness, and nausea or vomiting.

Call 911 immediately if you or someone you know experiences these symptoms. You can help avoid health difficulties related to the heat by staying in air conditioned areas, limiting strenuous activity and drinking plenty of fluids. 

The city’s Emergency Management and Health Departments announced it would open cooling centers across the city with extended operating hours beginning Tuesday. The cooling centers offers New Yorkers who lack proper air conditioning a comfortable way to beat the heat.

You can find cooling centers through the city’s Cooling Center Finder at maps.nyc.gov/cooling-center beginning at 9 p.m. Monday night, Aug. 9, or by calling 311. Pet-friendly cooling centers are available.

“New York City will experience its hottest week of the season so far. As these dangerous conditions return, we encourage New Yorkers to take steps to keep cool and stay safe,” said NYC Emergency Management Commissioner John Scrivani. “Thanks to our partners, elected officials and City agencies, we have many cooling centers and outdoor cooling options available throughout the five boroughs. We encourage all New Yorkers to call 311 to find the cooling center nearest to them.”

The city’s beaches and outdoor pools are open, and offer a great way for families to enjoy a day out in the sun and stay cool. Pools are open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. and from 4 to 7 p.m. daily; they’re closed for one hour, 3 to 4 p.m., daily for cleaning. Bring a bathing suit, towel and a lock to secure your belongings.

You can find your nearest pool at nyc.gov/parks/pools.

The summer also means that youths across the city will pop open fire hydrants to get a little cool relief from the heat. The city advises residents not to improperly open a hydrant, as doing so can waste 1,000 gallons of water per minute.

Instead, head to your local firehouse to get a spray cap, which allows hydrants to produce 25 gallons of water per minute. Adults 18 years of age and older with proper identification can obtain a spray cap.

Summer’s heat also means more energy use, putting strain on the local power grid that could result in localized power outages. New Yorkers are advised to set their air conditioners to 78 degrees or the “low” setting, and to avoid running air conditioners, lights and other appliances while away from home.

For more information, including heat-related health tips and warning signs of heat illness, visit NYC.gov/health or NYC.gov/beattheheat.