Millions of Americans Under Excessive Heat Warnings

Written by Leah Bright—Insurance Agent

July 25, 2023 · 7 minute read · Commercial Lines

Blog Millions of Americans Under Excessive Heat Warnings

About one-quarter of Americans are under excessive heat warnings or advisories. Parts of the country are experiencing triple-digit temperatures, including the Pacific Northwest, California, the Great Basin, parts of the Southern Plains, the Central Gulf Coast and the southern tip of Florida.

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“Take the heat seriously and avoid time outdoors.” - NationalWeather Service

These temperatures present danger for many if they are not cautious. Young children and the elderly are especially vulnerable to heat-related illness and death.

What Are Heat Warnings and Advisories?

A heat warning typically indicates conditions that pose a threat to life or property. These warnings also include conditions that make travel difficult. A heat advisory indicates that the expected weather conditions pose a significant inconvenience and could potentially threaten life and property if caution is not taken.

The exact level of heat and humidity at which heat warnings and advisories are issued varies based on location. Regardless,the temperatures associated with heat warnings and advisories can trigger potential health issues like heat stroke, which can be fatal.
While temperatures are expected to cool down across most of the country in the near future, below are tips to stay safe until a cooler forecast arrives.

Tips to Stay Safe in the Heat

When the weather is extremely hot, it’s critical to take necessary precautions in order to remain safe. Consider these tips:

  • Listen to National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Weather Radio for critical updates from the National Weather Service.
  • Use box fans and ceiling fans to promote air circulation throughout your home, particularly if your home doesn’t have air conditioning.
  • Seek comfort in public buildings, such as libraries, schools, movie theaters, shopping malls and other air-conditioned community facilities.
    Do errands and outside chores early or late in the day.
  • Replace heavy or hot meals with lighter, refreshing foods. Avoid using salt tablets unless directed to do so by a doctor.
  • Drink plenty of water, even if you do not feel thirsty, and avoid drinks with caffeine. People with epilepsy; heart, kidney or liver disease; or who are on fluid-restricted diets or have problems with fluid retention should consult a doctor before increasing their fluid intake.
  • Limit alcoholic beverages as these are diuretics and can cause dehydration.
  • Dress in loose-fitting, lightweight and brightly colored clothes that cover as much skin as possible. Avoid dark colors, as they absorb the sun’s rays.
  • Protect your face and head from sun exposure by wearing a wide-brimmed hat.
  • Use the buddy system, take frequent breaks and rehydrate when working in extreme heat. If possible, try to avoid strenuous work during the warmest part of the day.
  • Take a cool shower or apply a cold compress to your pulse points.
  • Check on your animals frequently to ensure they are not suffering from the heat.
  • Go to a designated public shelter if your home loses power in the heat wave.
  • Learn about the signs and symptoms of heat-related illness. Heat stroke and heat exhaustion are dangerous and can be life-threatening if left untreated. Seek immediate medical attention if you or a loved one is experiencing the signs or symptoms of heat-related illness.

Remain cautious, check on loved ones and neighbors, and use these safety tips to stay safe during heat warnings and advisories.

The content of this News Brief is of general interest and is not intended to apply to specific circumstances. It should not be regarded as legal advice and not be relied upon as such. In relation to any particular problem which they may have, readers are advised to seek specific advice. © 2023 Zywave, Inc. All rights reserved.

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