What is it?
A prolonged period of excessively warm weather.
What’s the Risk?
Doing too much on a hot day, spending too much time in the sun, or staying too long in an overheated place can cause heat-related illnesses.
How Should I Prepare?
Before the extreme heat:
- Install air conditioning.
- Insulate around window air conditioners, ducts, and doors. Weather-strip doors and window sills.
- Consider leaving storm windows up all year. They can help keep heat out during the summer months as well as keeping the cold out in the winter.
- Install reflective film or shades on windows. Outdoor louvers or awnings can reduce the heat entering a house by as much as 80 percent.
- Use fans to keep the cool air circulating.
- Plant deciduous trees around your house that block the heat in summer and let the sun shine through in winter.
During periods of extreme heat:
- Slow down. Your body can't operate as efficiently in high temperatures and humidity.
- Dress in lightweight, light-colored clothing to help maintain a normal body temperature.
- Drink plenty of water while the hot spell lasts.
- Avoid thermal shock. Acclimate yourself gradually to warmer weather.
- Try to get out of the heat for at least a few hours each day. If you can't do this at home, go to a cool store, restaurant, or theater - anything to keep your exposure time down.
- Don't get too much sun. Sunburn makes the job of heat dissipation that much more difficult.