BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - Some of the hottest weather of the summer season is on the way this week. With hot weather expected , you should take time to make sure you are prepared.
Check out these tips for staying safe during the heat wave:
- Wear light weight clothing
- Wear light colored clothing
- Drink plenty of water
- If you don't have air condition, cool down in public buildings
- Take cool baths and showers
- Check in on elderly family members, friends and neighbors
- Check on pets
- Make sure child seating and equipment in cars are not too hot
- Do not leave kids or pets unattended in your vehicle
- Slow down, strenuous activities should be reduced or eliminated
- If you think your pet has heatstroke: call or visit your veterinarian; move animal into AC, shade; apply ice pack, cold towels; let pet drink small amounts of cool water or lick ice cubes·
- Eat less protein and more fruits and vegetables – protein produces and increases metabolic heat, which can cause water loss. Eat small meals, but eat more often. Do not eat salty foods.
- If you must go outdoors, wear sunscreen with a high sun protector factor rating (at least SPF 15) and a hat to protect your face and head.
- Cover as much skin as possible to avoid sunburn and over-warming effects of sunlight on your body.
City pools and splash pads:
Heat Health Hazards, from Governor Andrew Cuomo's office:
- Heat Stroke: Also known as sunstroke - can be life threatening. Body temperature can rise and cause brain damage; death may result if not cooled quickly. Signals include hot, red, and dry skin; changes in consciousness; rapid, weak pulse, and shallow breathing. Relief for lowering body temperature can be with a cold bath or sponge.
- Heat Exhaustion: Less dangerous than heat stroke, heat exhaustion usually occurs when people exercise too heavily or work in warm, humid places where body fluids are lost. Signals include cool, moist, pale or flushed skin; heavy sweating; headache; nausea or vomiting; dizziness and exhaustion. If symptoms occur, get the victim out of sun, and apply cool, wet cloths.
- Sunburn: Sunburn slows the skin's ability to cool itself. Signals include redness and pain; in severe cases, swelling of skin, blisters, fever, and headaches can occur. Ointments can be a relief for pain in mild cases. A physician should see serious cases.
- Heat Cramps: Muscular pains and spasms caused by heavy exertion. Loss of water and salt from sweating causes cramping. Signals are abdominal and leg muscle pain. Relief can be firm pressure on cramping muscles, or gentle massages to relieve cramping.
Energy conservation tips from National Grid:
- Turn off ceiling fans, close the drapes – Ceiling fans don't actually cool your home; they only circulate air to make you feel cooler. Therefore, they are most effective when you're home to enjoy the benefits. Turn them off when you're not home and save energy in the process. Also, draw blinds, shades or drapes to block the sunlight during the hottest part of the day, especially on south and west-facing windows.
- Put off heat generating activity – Cool things down by reducing the amount of heat generated in your home. Turn off lights when they are not needed, and avoid cooking, bathing or washing clothes during the hottest hours of the day.
- Use electric fans (floor and window) – Electric fans use very little electricity costing approximately $9 to $11 per months for continuous use and can provide relief from the heat.
- Adjust the thermostat – Air conditioners cool a space at the same rate no matter what the setting. Adjusting the temperature control to 65 degrees will not help cool your home to 78 degrees any more quickly than if you leave the temperature at 78, but switching to the lower setting may be costing you more money. Also, a 75 degree setting will cost about 18 percent more than a 78 degree setting. To optimize air conditioning systems set the thermostat on your air conditioner as high as comfort will permit.
- Use programmable thermostats – Use of programmable thermostats optimizes air conditioning systems, helping to boost energy savings. National Grid offers a $25 rebate for each seven-day programmable thermostat that you install (maximum two per household).
- Change air conditioner filters – Remember to keep the air flowing freely. Check your air conditioner filters and replace or clean them if they're clogged.
- Check refrigerator and freezer temps – The ideal refrigerator temperature is between 37 and 40 degrees. For the freezer the ideal reading is 5 degrees. It is important to keep you refrigerator full so they do not have to work as hard to stay cold. This can drastically lower the amount of energy they would ordinarily need to function properly.
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