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Heat Awareness Day in Wisconsin is June 2

By Andrew Beckett

When temperatures climb, it’s important to take steps to protect yourself and those around you from the heat.

To help encourage everyone to be prepared, Gov. Tony Evers has declared this Wednesday, June 2 Heat Awareness Day in Wisconsin.

“Staying safe during periods of hot weather should be a top priority for everyone in the state,” said Dr. Darrell L. Williams, Wisconsin Emergency Management administrator. “During Heat Awareness Day, I encourage people to learn how to recognize the signs of heat-related illnesses and how to react.”

Preliminary data from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services shows seven people died in Wisconsin last year during the summer months due to heat-related causes, while thousands of people fall ill or are hospitalized in the state each year.

Those most vulnerable include very young children, the elderly, and people with heart disease or high blood pressure. Individuals who are overweight or on certain medications may also be more susceptible to illnesses during extreme heat events.

“It’s important to make sure those who are socially isolated remain safe when temperatures climb,” Williams said. “Check in with elderly neighbors or those who have special medical needs to ensure they are safe.”

The heat can also be dangerous for pets. Help keep them safe by limiting their time outdoors and making sure they have access to fresh drinking water.

The inside of a car can be especially dangerous. On an 80-degree Fahrenheit day, temperatures in a vehicle parked in direct sunlight can climb almost 20 degrees in just 10 minutes. Never leave a child or pet inside a parked car. Leaving a window cracked is not enough.

Tips for staying safe during extreme heat:

  • Stay cool – Remain inside air-conditioned buildings as much as possible during the hottest parts of the day and avoid direct sunlight.
  • Stay aware – Watch for signs of heat-related illnesses such as weakness, dizziness, nausea and muscle cramps. If symptoms don’t improve, seek medical attention.
  • Stay hydrated – Drink plenty of water. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink!
  • Stay informed – Pay attention to local weather forecasts and extreme heat alerts.

During periods of extreme heat, the National Weather Service may issue advisories, watches, or warnings to the public. When those conditions are present, people are encouraged to adjust their plans and take precautions to help reduce their risk of exposure to potentially dangerous conditions.

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