Eddy County Emergency Management

EXTREME HEAT/HEATWAVE

A heatwave is an extended period of extreme heat that is many times accompanied by high humidity.  These are very dangerous conditions and in some cases, life-threatening.

  • Be sure to have your Go Bag/ Emergency Kit.
  • Check on the elderly, very young and obese as these are the people most effected by the extreme heat.  Make sure that people living alone are checked frequently.
  • Stay indoors and keep the air conditioner on.  If you do not have air conditioning, get to a place that does, especially during the hottest part of the day.  Plan in advance where you can go to keep cool.
  • Bring pets indoors if it is air conditioned.
  • Make sure everyone stays hydrated (drinks enough water/liquids).  Avoid alcohol and caffeine.
  • Do not do strenuous work during the hottest part of the day.  If you must work, take frequent breaks and drink plenty of water.
  • Wear lightweight, light colored clothing, especially if you must be outdoors.

KNOW THE SIGNS OF HEAT EXHAUSTION AND HEAT STROKE AND WHAT TO DO

  • Heat Exhaustion: Cool, moist, pale or flushed skin; heavy sweating, headache, nausea or vomiting, dizziness and exhaustion.  Body temperature may be normal but is likely to be rising.  WHAT TO DO:  Get the person out of the heat and into a cooler place.  Remove or loosen tight clothing and apply cool, wet cloths (wash cloths, towels, sheets).  If the person is conscious, give cool sips of water to drink.  Make sure they drink slowly so as not to choke or vomit.  It is best to have them drink 4 to 6 oz. of cool water (1/2 a glass) every 15 minutes.  Let the person rest in a comfortable position and watch carefully for changes in his or her condition.
  • Heat Stroke:  Hot, red skin, changes in consciousness, rapid, weak pulse and rapid, shallow breathing.  Body temperature can be very high, sometimes as high as 105°.  WHAT TO DO:  This is a life-threatening situation and help is needed fast.  Call 911.  Move the person to a cooler place.  Quickly cool the body.  Immerse the victim in a cool bath or wrap wet sheets around the body and fan them.  Watch for signs of breathing problems.  Keep the person lying down and continue to cool the body any way you can.  If the victim refuses water, is vomiting or there are changes in the level of consciousness, do not give anything to eat or drink.