While many people look forward to warmer temperatures during the summer months, it’s also important to remember that hot conditions can turn dangerous quickly. June 5, 2019 is Heat Awareness Day in Wisconsin.
In 2018, preliminary figures from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services show five people died in Wisconsin due to heat-related causes. In the last five years, at least 13 people have died in Wisconsin and thousands of residents have fallen ill or been hospitalized due to heat-related conditions.
“Death or illness due to extreme heat can occur with little warning,” said Wisconsin Emergency Management Administrator Brian Satula. “Many victims of heat-related illnesses are socially isolated, so please stay in contact with family members and friends who are elderly or have mobility issues during hot weather.”
It is important to take care of yourself and to check in on family, friends, and neighbors during periods of extreme heat. Those most vulnerable include very young children, the elderly, and people with heart disease or high blood pressure. Individuals who are overweight or on certain medications may also be more susceptible to illnesses during extreme heat events.
The inside of a car can be especially dangerous, with temperatures inside a vehicle able to climb very quickly – as much as 20 degrees Fahrenheit in just 10 minutes. Never leave a child or pet inside a parked car. Leaving a window cracked is not enough.
Tips for staying safe during extreme heat:
-Stay cool – Remain inside air-conditioned buildings as much as possible during the hottest parts of the day and avoid direct sunlight.
-Stay aware – Watch for signs of heat-related illnesses, such as weakness, dizziness, nausea, and muscle cramps. If symptoms don’t improve, seek medical attention.
-Stay hydrated – Drink plenty of water. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink!
-Stay informed – Pay attention to local weather forecasts and extreme heat alerts.
Find ReadyWisconsin’s full packet on Heat Awareness Day online at https://readywisconsin.wi.gov/wp-content/uploads/Be_Informed/PDF/HeatAwarenessDay2019.pdf