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Hydration the key to beating the heat

Cole Bender.jpg
Posted at 8:08 PM, Jun 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-17 10:06:48-04

COLORADO SPRINGS — When there's record-setting heat outside, it's safest to stay indoors and enjoy their air conditioning. However, many people still have jobs that don't allow them to take refuge indoors.

Brothers Alvin and Cole Bender run the Snack Attack Shack at Venezia Park. Alvin started the ice cream peddler business four years ago when the park first opened. Since then he has been able to expand, with Cole running the ice cream cart while Alvin drives an ice cream van through nearby neighborhoods.

Hot days are good for business because they tend to draw large crowds to the park's popular splash pads.

"I've been out here where I had a line, just on the ice cream, from here all the way over the bathroom which is about 50 feet away," said Cole.

Both men came to the park prepared for a day in the sun.

"I've got A/C in the van and I've got the cooler next to me full of water," Alvin said.

"I've got a cooler with ice, sodas, and waters," added Cole.

Staying hydrated is the key to heat-related injuries like heat stroke and heat exhaustion. Lt. Aaron McConnellogue of the Colorado Springs Fire Department said in dry climates like Colorado, it's easy to get dehydrated. Sweating, speaking, and even breathing all expel moisture.

"Sometimes people just not paying attention is and their workload or they've just been outside for too long and not taking a break, but that is something in the summertime that we run on frequently," he said.

McConnellogue specifically recommends drinking water, between 10 to 15 cups on a hot day. He also urges people to take frequent breaks away from the direct sunlight and to wear loose-fitting clothing.

"Sweating is a natural thing that we're going to do to cool our bodies off and when you wear that loose clothing and it stays moist and we get a light breeze that comes in, that certainly helps you cool the body well," he said.

Heat Stroke vs Heat Exhaustion
The signs of heat stroke vs heat exhaustion

Some of the warning signs for heat stroke are headaches and cramps. Another signal is when the things you say stop making sense or if or your behavior is out of the ordinary to those around you.

Lt. McConnellogue said those symptoms can occur more quickly in children, the elderly, and those with underlying health conditions.