Emergency management director: Summertime heat isn’t over yet

SUBMITTED BY Osage County Emergency Management

A message from the Osage County Emergency Management Director Howard M. Pattison:

We have been very fortunate that the temperatures this summer haven’t been as severe as they have in the past, but this is Oklahoma, and the weather can change at any time. Here are some Basic Summer Heat Safety Tips that everyone should follow in order to avoid the dangers of heat exposure.

• During the hottest hours of the day, stay inside. If possible stay inside an air-conditioned building. The hottest hours of the day are typically from mid-morning to mid-afternoon.

• Dress lightly, and when sleeping, use lightweight, breathable covers.

• Drink plenty of water and other fluids. When temperatures climb above 90 degrees, it’s important to drink at least a gallon of liquid per day, preferably water. Those who are overweight and in humid conditions need even more.

• Avoid drinking alcohol and beverages that are carbonated or contain caffeine when temperatures are high, as they can lead to dehydration.

• Keep blinds and curtains closed from morning until the late afternoon to block extra direct heat from sunlight.

• Move your exercise routine to early morning or later in the evening.

• Never ever leave a person or a pet in the car in hot conditions while you run to do a quick errand. People and animals can succumb to heat exposure and death very quickly in a hot car. Cars can become overheated quickly and when overheated become like ovens. It’s never safe.

• Properly supervise children during outdoor play, being sure to monitor them closely and frequently.

• Seek medical care right away if you become nauseous, start vomiting or experience cramps.

• Stay on the lowest level of your home.

• Use a fan. Don’t place the fan directly in front of a window because it may push hot air in. Try placing the fan so that it blows in the room and out the window instead.

• Use small appliances like slow cookers and tabletop grills rather than your traditional oven or stove to keep kitchen heat to a minimum.

• Verify that seat belts and car seat restraints are not too hot before buckling yourself or anyone else into a car.