Photo courtesy of Sasha
While the some of the country is dreaming of pumpkin spice lattes much of the Western and South-western states are preparing for excessive heat. In California alone there are 21 Heat alerts.
According to the National Weather Service:
- Excessive Heat Warning—Take Action! An Excessive Heat Warning is issued within 12 hours of the onset of extremely dangerous heat conditions. The general rule of thumb for this Warning is when the maximum heat index temperature is expected to be 105° or higher for at least 2 days and night time air temperatures will not drop below 75°; however, these criteria vary across the country, especially for areas not used to extreme heat conditions. If you don’t take precautions immediately when conditions are extreme, you may become seriously ill or even die.
- Excessive Heat Watches—Be Prepared! Heat watches are issued when conditions are favorable for an excessive heat event in the next 24 to 72 hours. A Watch is used when the risk of a heat wave has increased but its occurrence and timing is still uncertain.
- Heat Advisory—Take Action! A Heat Advisory is issued within 12 hours of the onset of extremely dangerous heat conditions. The general rule of thumb for this Advisory is when the maximum heat index temperature is expected to be 100° or higher for at least 2 days, and night time air temperatures will not drop below 75°; however, these criteria vary across the country, especially for areas that are not used to dangerous heat conditions. Take precautions to avoid heat illness. If you don’t take precautions, you may become seriously ill or even die.
Tips to survive the heat:
- Drink more fluids regardless of your activity level. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink.
- Don’t drink liquids that contain alcohol or large amounts of sugar–these actually cause you to lose more body fluid. Also, avoid very cold drinks because they can cause stomach cramps.
- Stay indoors and, if possible, stay in an air-conditioned place. If your home does not have air conditioning, go to the shopping mall, public library, or local cooling center.
- Taking a cool shower or moving to an air-conditioned place is a good way to cool off and prevent illness.
- Wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.
- Never leave anyone in a closed, parked vehicle.
- If you must be out in the heat:
- Limit your outdoor activity to morning and evening hours.
- Cut down on exercise. If you must exercise, drink two to four glasses of cool, non-alcoholic fluids each hour. A sports beverage can replace the salt and minerals you lose in sweat.
- Try to rest often in shady areas.
We hope you stay safe and cool out there.
For California: https://alerts.weather.gov/cap/ca.php?x=1
Everyone else: https://alerts.weather.gov/