CAPE CORAL

Southwest Florida is feeling the heat. The region hit 97 degrees Thursday. If you add in the Florida humidity, it feels well into the hundreds. In fact, The Weather Authority confirmed our peak heat index was 113 degrees Friday.

A lot of people are trying to cool down in the water. Water was the word of the day Friday among people we spoke to at Cape Coral Yacht Club. People were swimming and they were drinking water to stay hydrated.

That’s exactly what experts say is key to keeping safe and beating the summer heat.

“Did you know that the UV still goes to 11? We learned that today,” Alex Lopez said.

The heat is giving beachgoers a nice excuse to hit the sand and the water, but all that summer heat can get dangerous fast.

“Dangerous weather! “Dangerous weather, as my son would say,’ said Sarah Marley-Main, who was visiting form New Hampshire.

“You know, we live in Southwest Florida. Our humidity is very high. The heat is high,” Amy Bollen said. “It’s just not a safe place to be.”

Bollen works for South Trail Fire & Rescue District. Her team responds to heat-related calls, which is why she wants to make sure people are staying hydrated among other precautions.

“Hydration is a very large concern for us and addition to making sure they remember their children if they are in the backseat in a car seat,” Bollen said.

Firefighters also want visitors to the state to understand the heat, especially during the summertime.

“On top of the pavement being super hot, you can actually burn your feet depending on how hot it can get up to,” said Grace Morschauser, who was visiting.

To stay hydrated, a sip of sweet tea won’t cut it.

“To understand that sweet tea and coffee does not hydrate you. It actually dehydrates you,” Bollen said. “And understand that snacks can be watermelon or mangoes, something that can help you stay hydrated and not dehydrate you more.”

“One thing that we’ve been buying a lot of our cases of water,” Morschhauser said. “We’ve been going through them like nothing else.”

Bollen also told us parents should keep an extra eye on their children because their body temperature rises three to five times faster than a healthy adult.

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