Health Department urges precautions from extended extreme heat

Posted 18 June 2024 at 8:14 am

Press Release, Genesee & Orleans County Health Departments

Genesee and Orleans counties are expecting unusually hot weather this week, which will last through Friday evening, particularly on Wednesday and Thursday.

“The duration of the heat will include both daytime and nighttime temperatures, with little or no relief during the overnight hours,” stated Paul Pettit, public health director of the Genesee and Orleans County Health Departments (GO Health). “This poses an elevated risk of causing heat-related illnesses.”

GO Health is reminding residents to take necessary precautions during this week’s extreme heat event. Follow the steps below to stay cool, hydrated, and safe:

  • Stay in a cool or air-conditioned building as much as possible. Even a few hours spent in air conditioning can help your body stay cooler when you go back into the heat.
  • Cover windows with drapes or shades.
  • Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water and avoid sugary or alcoholic beverages. Don’t wait until you are thirsty to drink.
  • Schedule outdoor activities carefully. If you must be outdoors, try to limit your outdoor activity and find shade where you can. Limit strenuous activities and exercise. Drink plenty of water and take frequent breaks.
  • Wear appropriate clothing. Choose clothing that is lightweight, light-colored, and loose-fitting.
  • Take a cool shower or bath using mildly warm water. Sudden temperature changes may make you feel dizzy or sick.
  • Use your stove and oven less to maintain a cooler temperature in your home.
  • Do not leave kids, pets, or anyone else in cars. Cars can quickly heat up to dangerous temperatures, even with a window cracked open.
  • Wear sunscreen. Sunburn can impact how your body cools down and can cause you to become dehydrated.
  • Check on your neighbors, family and friends, especially those who are at higher risk. Those most at risk include older adults, infants and young children, pregnant people, people with disabilities, people with chronic conditions, and outdoor workers.
  • Keep your pets safe. Don’t keep your pets outdoors for too long, and provide them with plenty of fresh water. Avoid asphalt and dark pavement, which can be very hot.
  • Know the signs and symptoms of heat related illnesses, including heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Heat stroke is a medical emergency, and if it is suspected, call 911 immediately. To learn more, click here.