FEMA: Things you should do before and after a heatwave

FEMA offers an app that can be downloaded on mobile devices

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has a list on their mobile app of things to do before and after a heat wave.
FEMA recommendations prior to a heatwave:
  • Check air-conditioning ducts for proper insulation.
  • Weather-strip doors and sills to keep cool air in.
  • Cover windows that receive morning or afternoon sun with drapes, shades, awnings, or louvers. (Outdoor awnings or louvers can reduce the heat that enters a home by up to 80 percent.)
  • Know those in your neighborhood who are elderly, young, sick or overweight. They are more likely to become victims of excessive heat and may need help.
  • Be aware that people living in urban areas may be at greater risk from the effects of a prolonged heat wave than are people living in rural areas.
  • Get trained in first aid to learn how to treat heat-related emergencies.
Once the heat is here, FEMA suggests taking additional steps:
  • Stay on the lowest floor out of the sunshine, if air conditioning is not available.
  • Consider spending the warmest part of the day in public buildings such as libraries, schools, movie theaters, shopping malls, and other community facilities. Circulating air can cool the body by increasing the perspiration rate of evaporation.
  • Eat well-balanced, light, and regular meals. Avoid using salt tablets unless directed to do so by a physician.
  • Avoid drinks with caffeine. Persons who have epilepsy or heart, kidney, or liver disease; are on fluid-restricted diets; or have a problem with fluid retention should consult a doctor before increasing liquid intake.
  • Limit intake of alcoholic beverages.
  • Dress in loose-fitting, lightweight, and light-colored clothes that cover as much skin as possible. Avoid dark colors because they absorb the sun’s rays.
  • Check on family, friends, and neighbors who do not have air conditioning and who spend much of their time alone.
For additional preparedness facts, you can download the FEMA app or go to www.ready.gov.

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