Article
Heat Safety Tips

Released: 7/6/2016

 

With higher than normal temperatures this week, please refer to the following heat safety tips from the American Red Cross to prevent heat-related illnesses in all members of your household: people and pets. The very young and the very old are particularly susceptible.

 

 

 

  • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of fluids, even if you do not feel thirsty. Avoid drinks with caffeine or alcohol. 
  • Eat small meals and eat more often.
  • Wear loose-fitting, lightweight, light-colored clothing. Avoid dark colors because they absorb the sun’s rays.
  • Slow down, stay indoors and avoid strenuous exercise during the hottest part of the day. Postpone outdoor games and activities.
  • Take frequent breaks if you must work outdoors, and use a buddy system when working in excessive heat.
  • Check on family, friends and neighbors who do not have air conditioning, who spend much of their time alone or who are more likely to be affected by the heat.
  • Never leave children or pets alone in enclosed vehicles. 
  • Check on your pets frequently to ensure that they are not suffering from the heat. Make sure they have plenty of water to drink.
  • Listen to local radio stations for announcements on the opening of cooling centers and to NOAA Weather Radio for critical updates.

 

 

 

SIGNS OF HEAT-RELATED ILLNESSES AND WHAT TO DO:

 

The signs are: nausea, dizziness, flushed or pale skin, heavy sweating and headaches. 

 

Victims of heat-related illness should be moved to a cool place, given cool water to drink and ice packs or cool wet cloths should be applied to the skin. If a victim refuses water, vomits or loses consciousness, call  9-1-1 or your local Emergency Medical Services (EMS) number should be called immediately.

 

 

 

GENERAL CARE FOR HEAT EMERGENCIES . . . In Short: 

1. Cool the Body 

2. Give Fluids 

3. Minimize Shock 

 

 

  • For heat cramps/heat exhaustion: Get the person to a cooler place and have him or her rest in a comfortable position. Give a half glass of cool water every 15 minutes. Do not let him or her drink too quickly. Do not give liquids with alcohol or caffeine in them, as they can make conditions worse. Remove or loosen tight clothing and apply cool, wet cloths such as towels or wet sheets. 
  • For heat stroke: Heat stroke is a life-threatening situation! Help is needed fast. Call 9-1-1 or your local EMS number. Move the person to a cooler place. Quickly cool the body. Wrap wet sheets around the body and fan it. If you have ice packs or cold packs, wrap them in a cloth and place them on each of the victim's wrists and ankles, in the armpits and on the neck to cool the large blood vessels. (Do not use rubbing alcohol because it closes the skin's pores and prevents heat loss.) Watch for signals of breathing problems and make sure the airway is clear. Keep the person lying down. 

 

 

You’ll find detailed heat wave safety information here.