Oklahoma residents are dealing with sweltering heat this week, with very little relief in sight.
On Sunday, Okmulgee tied for first with the heat index (feels like) temperature at 125 degrees, according to Okmulgee County Emergency Management Director Jeff Moore.
Moore shared the weekly forecast and some tips on staying hydrated and cool as much as possible.
Besides drinking plenty of hydrating fluids, find some shade, and take extra precautions if you work or spend time outside.
• Know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
• Wear lightweight 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 911. Several area schools with outdoor activities and practices shifted those things to later in the evening. Okmulgee Schools called off Monday afternoon ball games and are looking to reschedule those.
The heat also prompted the decision to move the start time of Friday’s home opening football game against Star Spencer to 8 p.m. instead of 7 p.m.
High school football practice also was moved yesterday to 7:45 p.m. as Coach Randy Jackson and his coaching staff prepare the Bulldogs for the upcoming season.
Henryetta Public Schools Transportation Director Justin Been updated parents on Monday about the district’s emergency action plans for possible heat-related incidents on the bus routes during the Excessive Heating Warning days.
“While we cannot control the climate outside or on the bus, we are equipping our drivers and para- professionals with the knowledge and necessary items to react appropriately to a ‘serious heat illness situation’ in the unfortunate event one of our students were to experience this scenario. We encourage bus riders to drink plenty of water and fluids to stay hydrated during these expected weather days.”
Been also encouraged parents or guardians to pick up their child on excessive heat days if at all possible.
“Please contact your child’s respective building front office to inform them if you choose to do so by approximately 12 p.m. on each day you choose to switch them from a bus rider to car rider,” Been stated. “Hopefully, we are nearing the end of this heat in the forecast and are looking forward to the Fall bringing much more comfortable weather for our students, bus drivers, and us all. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation.”
According to OCEM Director Moore, here is the forecast for the rest of the week:
• Wednesday’s high is forecasted to be around 99°F. The morning’s calm will give way to a gentle southward breeze at about 5 mph.
As Wednesday night approaches, skies will remain mostly clear, and the temperature will drop to around 75°F. A steady southeast breeze will keep things comfortable.
• Thursday comes back with another dose of sunshine and heat! Highs are projected to reach around 100°F, accompanied by a southwest wind of 5 to 10 mph.
Thursday night’s outlook remains mostly clear, with the temperature settling at around 76°F. A southern breeze of 5 to 10 mph will linger through the night.
• Brace yourselves for a toasty Friday, with mostly sunny skies and a high near 100°F. A southwest wind at 5 to 10 mph will provide a slight relief from the heat.
Friday night will be mostly clear, and the temperature will drop to around 74°F. After midnight, the northern breeze will shift to a southward direction, maintaining a gentle 5 mph.
• As we head into the weekend, Saturday promises sunshine and a high near 97°F. A north wind of 5 to 10 mph will keep things comfortable.
Saturday night will feature mostly clear skies, and the temperature will dip to around 71°F. Expect a moderate northeast wind of about 10 mph.
• Finally, Sunday will close the week with sunny skies and a high near 92°F. An easy northeast breeze of 10 mph will keep the day pleasant.
Stay cool, stay safe, and make the most of this sunny week ahead!
Several organizations and churches have come forward, willing to provide a safe, cool space to cool off and get some water:
Okmulgee Public Library
218 S. Okmulgee Ave. Mon. – Fri. • 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. No water by reading material or computers. — Okmulgee YMCA
106 W. 13th St. Mon. – Fri. • 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sat. • 12-5 p.m. — First United Methodist Church 302 S. Seminole Ave. Wed. – Thurs. • 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Showers are also available if needed. — Miss Mary’s Market 114 W. 8th St. Bottled water available. — Okmulgee County Election Board Office 314 W. 7th St. (Courthouse) Mon. – Fri. • 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. — Henryetta Locations Henryetta Public Library
518 W. Main St. Mon. – Fri. • 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. No water by reading material or computers. — First Baptist Church
420 W. Trudgeon St. Mon. – Fri. • 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. — Joy in Life
611 E. Trudgeon St.
Bottled water available in cooler outside under covered patio.