The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory for the New Orleans area from 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. Thursday.

City officials say the weather forecast indicates that high humidity levels will raise the heat index to between 105-110 degrees in New Orleans.

“These hot temperatures can become life-threatening if the proper precautions are not taken,” Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s office said.

Residents are urged to take the following precautions to prevent health emergencies due to the extreme heat:

- Stay indoors in air conditioning during the hottest parts of the day.

- If you must perform outdoor activities, do so early in the morning or late in the evening.

- Wear light, loose-fitting clothing and avoid unnecessary exposure to the sun.

- Most importantly, please stay hydrated. Be sure to drink plenty of water and don’t wait until you are thirsty. Consider drinking an electrolyte sports drink and avoid alcohol and caffeine.

- The very young, the elderly and those with chronic medical conditions such as diabetes or cardiovascular disease are at a greater risk for heat-related health issues and should take extra precautions to stay cool and hydrated.

Several local organizations are also providing shelter to escape the heat. Individuals seeking shelter during the daytime can visit the Community Resource and referral Center at 1530 Gravier Street or the Ozanam Inn at 843 Camp Street.

People needing to seek shelter overnight will be accepted at the following locations under certain conditions:

- The Salvation Army at 4530 South Claiborne Ave. will accept males and females starting at 4 p.m

- Ozanam Inn at 843 Camp Street will accept males only starting at 4 p.m.

- Covenant House at 611 North Rampart St. will accept males and females between ages 16-21, their dependent children, and any female with dependent minor children. Mothers with small children can come anytime.

- New Orleans Mission at 1130 Oretha Castle Haley Blvd. will only accept male or female adults starting at 4 p.m.

Children and pets should never be left unattended in a vehicle. Even in 70-degree weather, the interior temperature of a vehicle can increase rapidly, to over 100 degrees in just 20 minutes. Cracking a window does not help. Leaving a child or pet unattended in a vehicle often leads to a life-threatening emergency. Anyone who sees a child or animal unattended in a vehicle is urged to call 9-1-1 immediately.