Health Dept.: Stay safe in the heat

National Weather Service

MONTPELIER — The Vermont Dept. of Health (DOH) is advising people to take precautions as temperatures climb into the 90s, but feel even warmer.

The National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory which will last until 7 p.m. Friday.

“Heat illnesses are a real danger, even for young people,” DOH said in its Thursday press release. “In fact, Vermonters between the ages of 15 and 34 have a greater risk of going to the emergency department for a heat-related reason compared to adults aged 35 to 65.”

DOH advises that children and pets should not be left in a car unattended, even for short periods of time, as the temperature inside the car can increase very quickly.

Other advice from DOH:

STAY COOL

  • Stay in the shade, in air-conditioning if you can, or in cool places such as basements.
  • Wear lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.
  • Take cool showers.
  • Use fans, but don’t rely on them as the only way to stay cool.
  • Sleep without sheets.
  • Avoid hot drinks and meals.

STAY HYDRATED

  • Drink more water than usual, especially if you’re exercising or active outdoors.
  • Be proactive, don’t wait until you are thirsty to drink water.
  • Don’t drink alcoholic or caffeinated beverages.

STAY INFORMED

  • Follow local weather and news reports.
  • Sign up for weather alerts at VT-Alert (vem.vermont.gov/vtalert).
  • Try out the National Weather Service Experimental Enhanced Weather Outlook Map (www.weather.gov/btv/ehwo).
  • Check Health Department and Vermont Emergency Managment social media.

LISTEN TO YOUR BODY

  • Take it easy when it’s hot.
  • Reduce outdoor work and exercise and limit it to the cooler parts of the day.
  • Ask for help if you feel sick.
  • Stop what you are doing if you feel faint or weak.
  • Be more cautious if you have a chronic health condition.

DON’T BE A STRANGER

  • Call your loved ones and neighbors to check on them, especially if they are older or have chronic health conditions. If you need to go in person, only do so if you are not feeling sick, wear a cloth face mask or covering, keep a 6-foot distance from them, and wash your hands before and after your visit.
  • Make sure they are drinking enough water and are staying cool.
  • Remind them to take heat seriously.

COOL YOUR HOME

  • Draw light-colored shades to keep out the sun—dark-colored shades can be less effective.
  • Close windows during the day when it is hotter outside than inside.
  • Open windows at night when it’s cooler outside than inside.
  • Use fans to blow in cooler outside air or vent out warmer inside air.
  • Limit use of the stove, oven and other heat-generating appliances.

Vermont Emergency Management’s maintains a list of municipal cooling locations check vem.vermont.gov/content/municipal-cooling-locations to see if a center is open near you.

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