Heat exhaustion a threat in sweltering Metro Detroit

Holly Fournier
The Detroit News

Dozens of cooling centers are open to offer Metro Detroiters a break from extreme heat blanketing the region, causing heat advisories and heat indexes topping 100 degrees.

The heat advisory is in effect until 10 p.m. Friday from Midland to Monroe, including Wayne, Macomb, Oakland, Livingston and Washtenaw counties, according to the National Weather Service in White Lake Township.

“Temperatures (Friday) are going to be in the low to mid-90s with a heat index in the low 100s,” meteorologist Sara Schultz said.

High humidity will contribute to a spike in the "feels-like" temperature, she said.

Schultz advised residents to remain indoors with access to air-conditioning whenever possible. Otherwise, people should wear light clothing, drink plenty of water and avoid long periods in the sun. Strenuous outdoor activities should be limited, and people should be on the lookout for symptoms of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

“(With) heat exhaustion, (people feel) faint or dizzy, there’s excessive sweating, nausea, rapid weak pulse, and muscle cramps,” Schultz said. “(With) heat stroke, the biggest difference is there’s no sweating. Basically, you stop sweating. You’ll have the throbbing headache and your body temp rises above 103 degrees.”

Dozens of cooling centers were scheduled to open this weekend to give residents a break from high temperatures, according to Metro Detroit officials.

In Eastern Market, Team Wellness Center is opening its doors to men, women and families from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday, according to a press release by the center, which is located at 2925 Russell Street and can be reached at (313) 396-5300.

"We welcome anyone to join us to cool off during this extreme heat that can be dangerous, especially for people who have medical conditions," said Pamela Lamb, president of the center. "We have a large lobby with a television, a playhouse for kids, and a snack bar with cold water.  We have plenty of space for people to come and get comfortable."

The Salvation Army's Bed & Bread truck delivers free lunches with cool beverages between noon-1 p.m., officials said.

The center normally provides treatment to individuals with mental illness and addiction, help clients with employment, housing, GED classes and job training, as well as STD testing and other services. Residents seeking a spot to cool off do not need to be clients to visit the center, officials said.

Also in Detroit, the following locations will be available from noon-8 p.m. this Saturday and Sunday, as well as weekdays through out the summer during “excessively” hot days:

■ Crowell Recreation Center, 16630 Lahser. (313) 628-2050

■ Coleman A. Young Recreation Center, 2751 Robert Bradby Dr. (313) 628-0995

■ Farwell Recreation Center, 2711 E. Outer Drive. (313) 628-2028

■ Patton Recreation Center, 2301 Woodmere. (313) 628-2001

The Detroit Public Library’s main campus also will be open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday as well as weekdays, officials said. The building is at 5201 Woodward Avenue. Other branches will maintain hours of operation to provide residents throughout the city a chance to cool off.

Outside of Detroit, Wayne County residents can search for cooling centers by ZIP code.

“Pay special attention to the elderly, the very young and anyone with a pre-existing medical condition,” Wayne County officials said. “Residents should check in on older neighbors who may be isolated from friends and family.”

The ongoing heat wave could be accompanied by severe thunderstorms Friday and Sunday, Schultz said. The first round of storms should move out by Friday before returning Sunday, but there will be no relief from high temperatures.

“We’re still going to be in the low 90s Saturday and right around 90 on Sunday,” Schultz said. “But next week we’re looking at getting back into the 80s.”

Thursday is the first chance of temperatures returning to the low- to mid 80s, according to the weather service. Temperatures are expected to gradually drop before then.

“It appears after we get the thunderstorms here on Sunday, we’ll drop the humidity even more,” meteorologist Bryan Tilley said. “While the temperatures will still be in the upper 80s or even 90s, it won’t be quite as oppressive.”

There have been no single-day record high temperatures in July, according to Tilley. But he said he expects there to be more 90-plus degree days than average. There already have been four 90-plus degree days in this month, with more likely to come before the end of the week.

Elsewhere, farmers say the combination of heat and scarce rain is hurting their crops. In the Lansing area, corn and soybean plants look stressed and may not catch up, even with normal rainfall.

George Silva of Michigan State University Extension said crops “should be much bigger” at this time of year.

Bob Gardner, who grows corn and soybeans in the Holt area, said he’s “nervous and distressed.”

(313) 223-4616

Twitter: @HollyPFournier

Detroit News Reporter Evan Carter and The Associated Press contributed.

Metro Detroit extended forecast

Friday: Chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly sunny, with high temperatures of up to 96. Heat index values as high as 103. Chance of precipitation is 30 percent.

Friday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 66.

Saturday: Sunny, with a high in the low 90s.

Saturday night: Chance of showers and thunderstorms. Partly cloudy, with a low around 68. Chance of precipitation is 30 percent.

Sunday: Showers and thunderstorms likely. Mostly cloudy, with a high around 90. Chance of precipitation is 60 percent.

Sunday night: Chance of showers and thunderstorms. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 71. Chance of precipitation is 40 percent.

Monday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 88.

Monday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 67.

Detroit library branches open weekdays this summer:

■ Campbell Branch - 8733 W. Vernor. Phone: (313) 481-1550

12-8 p.m. M, W

10 a.m.-6 p.m. T, Th, F

■ Chaney Branch - 16101 Grand River, near Greenfield. Phone: (313) 481-1570

10 a.m.-6 p.m. M, W, F

12-8 p.m. T, Th

■ Chase Branch - 17731 W. Seven Mile, near Southfield. Phone: (313) 481-1580

10 a.m.-6 p.m. M, W, F

12-8 p.m. T, Th

■ Conely Branch - 4600 Martin, near Michigan. Phone: (313) 481-1590

10 a.m.-6 p.m. M, W, F

12-8 p.m. T, Th

■ Edison Branch - 18400 Joy Rd., near Southfield. Phone: (313) 481-1720

M, W: 12-8 p.m. M, W

10 a.m.-6 p.m. T, Th, F

■ Elmwood Park Branch - 550 Chene, near Lafayette. Phone: (313) 481-1730

10 a.m.-6 p.m. M, W, F

12-8 p.m. T, Th

■ Franklin Branch - 13651 E. McNichols, near Gratiot. Phone: (313) 481-1740

10 a.m.-6 p.m. M, W, F

12-8 p.m. T, Th

■ Hubbard Branch - 12929 W. McNichols, near James Couzens. Phone: (313) 481-1750

12-8 p.m. M, W

10 a.m.-6 p.m. T, Th, F

■ Thomas Jefferson Branch - 12350 E. Outer Drive, near E. Warren. Phone: (313) 481-1760

12-8 p.m. M, W

10 a.m.-6 p.m. T, Th, F

■ Knapp Branch - 13330 Conant, near E. Davison. Phone: (313) 481-1770

12-8 p.m. M, W

10 a.m.-6 p.m. T, Th, F

■ Parkman Branch - 1766 Oakman Blvd., near Linwood. Phone: (313) 481-1810

12-8 p.m. M, W

10 a.m.-6 p.m. T, Th, F

■ Redford Branch - 21200 Grand River, near W. McNichols. Phone: (313) 481-1820

12-8 p.m. M, W

10 a.m.-6 p.m. T, Th, F

■ Sherwood Forest Branch - 7117 W. Seven Mile, near Livernois. Phone: (313) 481-1840

10 a.m.-6 p.m. M, W, F

12-8 p.m. T, Th

■ Skillman Branch - 121 Gratiot, near Library Street. Phone: (313) 481-1850

10 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays