Summer Heat Safety Tips

Summer is the season we all look forward to – cookouts, swimming pools, playing sports or just hanging out on the back deck. But summer sun can also get a little sweltering sometimes. Extreme heat can pose a danger and cause serious health issues. Here are some tips to help protect yourself and your family as you enjoy the sunshine.

To maintain a comfortable environment indoors when the outside temps rise: 

  • Install central air conditioning (AC) or window air conditioners.
  • Check AC ducts for proper insulation.
  • Weather-strip doors and windows to keep cool air inside.
  • Use shades and awnings to keep extreme heat outside.
  • Keep storm windows up all year.
  • Install temporary window reflectors to reflect the heat back outside.

When the thermometer begins to skyrocket beyond what’s comfortable:

  • Stay indoors as much as possible, and limit sun exposure.
  • If you don’t have AC, visit someplace that does – such as a library or shopping mall.
  • If you need to work outdoors, do it in the early mornings or evenings. It’s summer, so luckily there’s still daylight after 8pm.
  • Drink plenty of water and eat well-balanced, light and regular meals. And avoid alcohol.
  • Dress in loose, lightweight and light-colored clothes.
  • Wear a wide-brimmed hat to protect your face and neck from the sun.
  • Make sure pets have plenty of water and a cool place to rest.
  • Keep an eye on older adults, young children and those who are sick or overweight. They’re the most likely to suffer heat-related illnesses
  • Never leave children or pets in closed vehicles

If anyone around you shows signs of these heat-related medical issues:

Heat cramps occur with muscle pain and spasms, usually in the abdominal muscles or legs due to overuse.

  • Have victim rest in comfortable position.
  • Stretch the affected muscle lightly and replenish fluids.
  • Give the victim half a glass of cool water every 15 minutes.
  • Don’t give them drink that contain alcohol or caffeine. Water is best. Or juice.

Heat exhaustion is caused by overexertion in a hot place. Blood flow to vital organs is restricted, causing the victim to go into mild shock. If not treated, the victim may have heat stroke.

  • Move the victim to a cooler place.
  • Loosen tight clothing and apply cool, wet towels or sheets.
  • Have the victim slowly drink half a glass of water every 15 minutes. No liquids with alcohol or caffeine.
  • Let the victim rest.

Heat stroke is a serious, life-threatening condition caused when the sweating function, which cools the body, starts breaking down. As a result, the body temperature can rise high enough to cause brain damage or death.

  • Call 911 immediately (or your local emergency number).
  • Move the victim to a cooler place.
  • Put them in a cool bath or wrap them in wet sheets and fan their body.
  • Monitor their breathing.
  • If the victim is vomiting, fading in and out of consciousness or refusing water, don’t give them anything to eat or drink.


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