Sweating out the Heat Wave

Posted at: 06/25/2012 10:46 AM

Summer is a time to get out of the house and enjoy the warm weather and sunshine, and in upstate New York we usually enjoy a moderate climate. With several days close to 90 degrees and the hottest months still ahead of us, we need to prepare for what could be a scorcher of a summer.

While we may not experience a declared heat wave, the effects of the summer heat can still be readily felt, especially by children and the elderly. Here are some tips to help you and your family beat the heat this summer.

• Listen to the local news to keep up-to-date on the weather forecast and potential hazardous weather conditions
• Never children or pets alone in a vehicle
• Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water (not soda or alcohol)
• Limit the amount of time you spend out in direct sunlight. Exposure to direct sunlight can increase the heat index (the temperature your body feels) by as much as 15° F
• Wear loose fitting clothes in light colors.
• Avoid work outside if possible, and take frequent breaks if it’s not.
• Educate yourself about heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke by visiting the American Red Cross’s website.
• As always, have an emergency preparedness kit in the house

For additional information, or to download a printable checklist, please visit the American Red Cross website at http://www.redcross.org.