Workers grapple with extreme temps: ‘Don’t stay in the heat too long’

COLONIAL HEIGHTS, Va. -- With a heat advisory and excessive heat warning issued for parts of Virginia Friday, folks working outside are urged to stay hydrated and take frequent breaks.

Working outside in the heat is part of the job for many in Central Virginia, from workers making deliveries and folks cutting grass.

In fact, a roof is one of the hottest places to be on a day like today, and roofing isn't something that can wait for cooler months.

With that said, Tabitha Milton of Jett Contracting Services makes sure her crew is taken care of.

"I won't push them, I would not push them," Milton said. "If they come down right now and say, 'I can't do anymore...' OK, let's wrap it up and we'll come back tomorrow."

With the heat index around triple digits, she's even willing to let the job take a little longer.

Many workers have their own ways of dealing with working in the heat.

Construction Supervisor Omar Martinez said a lot of water is required in these soaring temps.

"[It's] real tough, hotter than normal," said Ronte Jones, who was cutting grass. "I definitely want to stay hydrated and drink plenty of water and don't stay in the heat too long."

In fact, Jones keeps his cooler full with sports drinks and water.

Taking breaks is key, but hydration keeps you from more serious harm, experts said.

"One thing you can have heat stroke or heat exhaustion is when you sweat profusely and your body just can't keep up, and when you have a heat stroke, your skin is really hot and dry and that will effect the brain," said Bubby Bish from the Southside Virginia Emergency Crew.

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