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Park advocates urge precautions during extreme heat

171.6 Degrees. Booker T. Washington Playground, Artificial Turf Field. (Photos: © Geoffrey Croft/NYC Park Advocates)
June 22, 2012 3:22:49 PM PDT
City officials are warning exercisers and parents to take precautions during the extreme heat.

Surface temperatures taken in City parks can reach more than 170 degrees, according to readings taken by NYC Park Advocates. Artificial turf fields can reach at over 170 degrees. Temperatures on black rubber playground safety surfacing can reach over 160 degrees. By 9:15 am temperatures on artificial turf fields can reach over 140 degrees.

Young children are particularly susceptible as it can take only two seconds to burn on solid surfaces greater than 140 degrees, according to doctors. Each year more than a dozen children are treated in the City's three burn centers for injuries suffered on playground safety surfacing.

Exposure to playground safety surfacing can lead to severe burns and blisters. Exposure to artificial turf can lead to blisters, dehydration, nausea, and heat stroke, which can lead to death.

With the temperature expected to reach triple digits across the City again today, NYC Park Advocates offers the following tips:

1. Avoid playgrounds with black safety surfacing, unless they have complete shade coverage.

2. Avoid metal surfaces like slides.

3. Avoid artificial turf fields in the sun.

4. Drink lots of liquids.

5. Use spray showers, pools and water features.

6. Seek shade.

7. Participate in non-strenuous activities.

In case of emergencies, seek immediate medical treatment, or call 911.

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