Extreme heat is a period of high heat and humidity with temperatures above 90 degrees for at least two to three days. In extreme heat your body works extra hard to maintain a normal temperature, which can lead to death. In fact, extreme heat is responsible for the highest number of annual deaths among all weather-related hazards.
- Extreme Heat Information Sheet (PDF)
- Extreme Heat Safety Social Media Toolkit
- Protective Actions Research for Extreme Heat
- National Weather Service Heat Safety Tips and Resources
- National Weather Service – Dangers of Heat
- National Weather Service – Safety During Heat Wave
- National Weather Service Summer Safety Weather Ready Nation Outreach Materials
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- National Integrated Drought Information System
- National Integrated Heat Health Information System
If you are under an extreme heat warning
Find air conditioning.
Avoid strenuous activities.
Wear light clothing.
Check on family members and neighbors.
Drink plenty of fluids and watch for heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Never leave people or pets in a closed car.
HOW TO STAY SAFE WHEN EXTREME HEAT THREATENS
Find places in your community where you can go to get cool.
Try To Keep Your Home Cool
- Do not rely on a fan as your primary cooling device.
- Cover windows with drapes or shades.
- Weather-strip doors and windows.
- Use window reflectors such as aluminum foil-covered cardboard to reflect heat back outside.
- Add insulation to keep the heat out.
- Use a powered attic ventilator, or attic fan, to regulate the heat level of a building’s attic by clearing hot air.
- Install window air conditioners and insulate around them.
- Learn to recognize the signs of heat illness. For more information visit: www.cdc.gov/disasters/extremeheat/warning.html
Be Safe DURING
Never leave a child, adult, or animal alone inside a vehicle on a warm day.
Find places with air conditioning.
Libraries, shopping malls, and community centers can be a cool place to beat the heat. Stay informed and check with local authorities about possible closures prior to going to cooling centers.
Recognize and Respond
Know the signs of heat-related illnesses and ways to respond. At-risk populations for heat-related illness include older individuals and those with underlying health conditions. Know how to protect individuals especially at risk from extreme heat events.
If you are sick and need medical attention, contact your healthcare provider for advice and shelter in place, if you can. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 9-1-1
Signs: Muscle pains or spasms in the stomach, arms or legs
Actions: Go to a cooler location. Remove excess clothing. Take sips of cool sports drinks with salt and sugar. If you are sick and need medical attention, call your healthcare provider first. Follow your healthcare provider’s instructions about whether you should go to the hospital or cooler location yourself, as you may be putting others or yourself in greater risk for contracting COVID-19. If cramps last more than an hour, seek medical attention. If possible, put on a mask before medical help arrives.
Signs: Heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, tiredness, weakness, dizziness, headache, fainting, nausea, vomiting
Actions: Go to an air-conditioned place and lie down. Loosen or remove clothing. Take a cool bath. Take sips of cool sports drinks with salt and sugar. Call your healthcare provider if symptoms get worse or last more than an hour.
- Extremely high body temperature (above 103 degrees) taken orally
- Red, hot and dry skin with no sweat
- Rapid, strong pulse
- Dizziness, confusion or unconsciousness
Actions: Call 9-1-1 or get the person to a hospital immediately. Cool down with whatever methods are available until medical help arrives.