Sunday, November 18, 2018 Elyria 37°
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Heat chases most Lorain County residents indoors

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ELYRIA — Mike Sedor, 39, walked around Ely Square as one of the few people spending the day outside by choice playing Pokemon Go — a GPS-based reality mobile game — on his phone Tuesday.

As a California native, he’s not new to the heat, but he said the humidity was certainly hitting him hard.

“I am wearing the thinnest T-shirt I can find and I don’t normally wear shorts, but I am wearing shorts today,” he said.

With the heat wave continuing this week, many Lorain County residents have stayed indoors.

Herb de la Porte, LifeCare’s vice president, said there have been virtually no calls about people suffering from heat stroke or heat exhaustion. In addition, Kristen Kutina, senior strategist of internal communications and media relations for University Hospitals Elyria Medical Center, said the hospital hasn’t treated anyone suffering as a result of the heat.

The heat index Tuesday caused schools in several districts to close, sporting events to be rescheduled and sports practice days moved indoors.

Not everyone could avoid the outdoors or choose to escape it if it got too hot.

Elyria police Lt. James Welsh said officers are expected to be outside, but they need to not put themselves in danger. He said they are encouraged to keep the air conditioning running in cruisers and stay hydrated.

“While they can’t pick where they’re sent, just use common sense and to take care for themselves,” he said.

Officers can only stay so cool with uniforms they wear, said Lorain police Lt. Mike Failing.

“At minimum, they wear an undershirt, a (bulletproof) vest and a shirt; those vests don’t breathe,” he said.

Police aren’t the only ones. Firefighters work to stay hydrated and have enough firefighters at a call to maintain a safe rotation to avoid overheating.

“The bottom line is we have to do our job whether it’s hot or cold, so we just do our job,” said North Ridgeville fire Assistant Chief John Graff.

Fire officials often call in mutual aid to ensure a safe rotation of crew members. That’s what Elyria did 1:15 a.m. Tuesday on North Gateway Boulevard. Lorain and Sheffield fire departments helped Elyria alternate manpower in quelling a house fire.

Contact Bruce Walton at 329-7123 or by email at bwalton@chroniclet.com. Follow him on Facebook @BWalton440 or on Twitter @BruceWalton.


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