Health Department Warns of Extreme Heat, Offers Safety Tips

Updated: Jul 19, 2019

We will continue to update this post as new announcements are made by the Tompkins County Health Department.

Update - Friday July 19, 2019


Our area is expecting high temperatures and high humidity throughout the day today and tomorrow, July 20, with temperatures potentially reaching 100 degrees and a heat index of over 105 degrees. 


We are urging all residents – especially those who are at high risk for health problems – to stay indoors as much as possible and limit activity and sun exposure. 

  • Drink plenty of water – 2 to 4 glasses per hour

  • Limit strenuous outdoor activities during the hottest part of the day (between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.)

  • Go to air-conditioned public spaces such as a mall, library, movie theater, or community center

  • Prevent sunburn by applying sunscreen if you must be outside (SPF 15 or higher)

  • Wear loose, lightweight and light-colored clothing

  • Avoid alcohol, caffeine and sugary drinks that cause dehydration

  • Take a cool shower or go swimming

  • Wear a ventilated hat, such as straw or mesh

  • Never leave children or pets alone in vehicles

  • Use caution with electric fans; they create air flow and a sense of comfort, but do not lower body temperature.

  • Protect your pets, keep them inside with air conditioning or fans and make sure they have plenty of water. Prepare for temporary power outages ahead of time by assembling essential supplies such as flashlights, batteries, bottled water and food.

 

Know the signs and symptoms of heat related illnesses: 


Heat stroke is most serious. Signs and symptoms include an extremely high body temperature above 103 degrees; hot, dry, red skin; rapid pulse; loss of alertness; confusion; rapid and shallow breathing and unconsciousness. Call 911 immediately and cool the person quickly.

Heat exhaustion is a milder form of heat related illness and is characterized by heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, tiredness, weakness, dizziness, headache, nausea and vomiting, cool clammy skin, fainting. Move the person to a cool place, loosen clothes and apply cool, wet cloths.


If you see someone showing these symptoms, move the person to a cool place, loosen their clothes and apply cool, wet cloths.

(ITHACA, NY – July 18, 2019) – Our area is expecting extreme heat and humidity Friday, July 19 - Saturday, July 20 with temperatures possibly reaching 100 degrees.

BEAT the HEAT. These extreme temperatures can be dangerous to health. Take the following precautions: Drink plenty of water – 2 to 4 glasses per hour, depending on level of activityLimit strenuous outdoor activities during the hottest part of the day (between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.)Prevent sunburn by applying sunscreen if you must be outside (SPF 15 or higher)Wear loose, lightweight and light colored clothingAvoid alcohol, caffeine and sugary drinks that cause dehydrationTake a cool shower or go swimmingWear a ventilated hat, such as straw or meshNever leave children or pets alone in vehiclesGo to air-conditioned spaces such as a mall, library, or community centerUse caution with electric fans; they create air flow and a sense of comfort, but do not lower body temperature.

Who is Most at Risk? Infants and children up to four years of age, people 65 years of age and older, people who are overweight, and people who are ill, have chronic medical conditions and/ or on certain medications. Know the warning signs of heat-related illness. Check out our Preparedness Page. Every heat related illness and death is preventable! You can help prevent heat-related illnesses and deaths by checking on people in your community during periods of extreme heat and, if needed, offering to drive them to an air-conditioned location. A/C is the number one protective factor against heat-related illness and death, according to the CDC. Be Familiar with the Signs and Symptoms of Heat Related Illness Heat stroke is most serious. Signs and symptoms include an extremely high body temperature above 103 degrees; hot, dry, red skin; rapid pulse; loss of alertness; confusion; rapid and shallow breathing and unconsciousness. Heatstroke is a medical emergency and you should call 911 immediately.

Heat exhaustion is a milder form of heat related illness and is characterized by heavy sweating, paleness, muscle cramps, tiredness, weakness, dizziness, headache, nausea and vomiting, cool clammy skin, fainting.

If you see someone showing these symptoms, move the person to a cool place, loosen their clothes and apply cool, wet cloths.

Additional links:

For general information: tompkinscountyny.gov/health/summer/heat.TompkinsReady:  tompkinscountyny.gov/tompkinsreadyNational Weather Service heat safety tips: weather.gov/safetyRed Cross heat safety tips: RedCross.org: How to prepare for emergencies.National Weather Service Ithaca forecast page: weather.gov/bgm

Visit the Department of Emergency Response online, tompkinscountyny.gov/doer. Follow us on Facebook @tcemergencyresponse and Twitter @TompkinsDoER.

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