Drowning, Heat Combo Prompts Safety Warning for Swimmers

The heat may have played a role in the drowning death of a man Wednesday in Oak Point, police say.

Cesar Sanchez-Torres, of Sanger, and his co-workers took a break from their construction job by taking a swim in a nearby retention pond.

Witnesses said he cramped up and went under. The Tarrant County Medical Examiner's office ruled his death a drowning.

The drowning has prompted a familiar message from doctors for anyone going in the water -- one that's worth repeating.

Doctors say this is the kind of weather that can sneak up on a person, especially when swimming.

“We are seeing multiple patients coming in with things like rashes or cramps due to the heat,” said Dr. Monica Mikkilineni, a physician at Medical City Denton.

NBC 5 News
Dr. Monica Mikkilineni, a physician at Medical City Denton, warns people to pay attention to the warning signs of dehydration including cramping and feeling light headed.

Temperatures Thursday set a record. It was already 100 degrees by noon and went on to break a 93-year-old record for this day when the mercury hit 108 degrees.

“I know through the weekend it's going to be hot,” said Jan Webb, of Little Elm. “I heard 105, 107."

For Webb and her friends, beating the heat meant taking the kids swimming at Little Elm Beach. Keeping them safe meant being prepared and having plenty of sunscreen, and water.

“We like to come out here, stay hydrated, get in and out of the water and enjoy the day,” said Webb.

Mikkilineni said when swimming, pay attention to the warning signs of dehydration.

“It could be simple things like muscles aching or light-headedness, or headaches,” she said. “Things you could brush off as being just tired, but things you should pay special attention to especially if you're spending a lot of time outside."

Mikkilineni said common sense is the best move – avoiding alcohol, and drinks that are high in sugar, such as fruit juice or energy drinks.

“Yeah, you have to be smart,” said Webb. “Especially with the kids.”

Especially with a forecast that shows no sign of letting up, at least through next week.

Heat Advisory Precautions
With such oppressive heat in the forecast, North Texans are reminded to check on their friends and loved ones with health problems as they may be among the most susceptible to heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
As always, never leave young children or pets unattended in an enclosed vehicle, even for a short amount of time, as temperatures can quickly rise to threatening levels.
Pets should not be left unattended outdoors for more than a few minutes.
Water is the cornerstone to staying safe this week, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Officials said it's important to start drinking before becoming thirsty and if you know you're going to be out in the heat, begin drinking water the night before.
Officials recommend staying indoors, but anyone who must be outside should drink a cup of water about every 20 minutes and wear lightweight, loose-fitting clothing.
Symptoms of Heat Stroke: CDC
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the symptoms of heat stroke include hot, dry skin or profuse sweating; hallucinations, chills, throbbing headache, high body temperature, confusion/dizziness and slurred speech.
Take the following steps to treat a worker with heat stroke: Call 911 and notify their supervisor. Move the sick worker to a cool shaded area. Cool the worker using methods such as: Soaking their clothes with water. Spraying, sponging, or showering them with water. Fanning their body.

Symptoms of Heat Exhaustion: CDC
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the symptoms of heat exhaustion include heavy sweating, extreme weakness or fatigue, dizziness and confusion, nausea, clammy or moist skin, pale or flushed complexion, muscle cramps, slightly elevated body temperature and fast or shallow breathing.
Treat a worker suffering from heat exhaustion with the following: Have them rest in a cool, shaded or air-conditioned area. Have them drink plenty of water or other cool, nonalcoholic beverages. Have them take a cool shower, bath, or sponge bath.
Dos and Don'ts in Extreme Heat

Contact Us