How to keep safe during a heatwave

South East Queensland is currently experiencing heatwave conditions.

Did you know that heatwaves are responsible for more community deaths than bushfires, floods, cyclones and severe storms combined?

A heatwave occurs when both the maximum and minimum temperature are unusually high for a location for three or more days. It is the hot nights that also contribute to making a heatwave dangerous as people don’t have a chance to recover from the day’s heat.

You can stay safe by:

Being prepared

  • If you have air-conditioning, ensure the unit/s are in good working condition (filters cleaned etc).
  • Plan meals ahead that don’t require the oven or cooktop as they contribute to extra heat.
  • Ensure you have enough food, medicine and other supplies to avoid going out or if electricity supply is interrupted.
  • If your home gets very hot during the day, plan somewhere to go that is cooler – family or friends, local shopping centre, community centre or library.

Staying out of the heat

  • Keep any activity to a minimum during the hottest part of the day.
  • If possible, avoid going out in the hottest part of the day (10am-3pm).
  • Avoid strenuous activities like exercising.

Staying cool during the day

  • Block out the sun during the day by keeping curtains or blinds closed and windows closed (if the air outside is hotter than the air inside).
  • Stay in the coolest room/s in the home.
  • Use fans and/or air-conditioners to keep cool.
  • Drink two to three litres of water regularly throughout the day- don’t wait until you feel thirsty. Limit the intake of alcohol, soft drinks, tea or coffee.
  • Try and eat cool foods such as salads and fruit.
  • Wear lightweight, loose clothing made of breathable fabric (cotton, linen).
  • Take frequent cool baths or showers or use a cool, wet cloth or spray bottle with cold water to keep cool.
  • If you do go out, seek out the shade and drink regularly.
  • Never leave adults, children or animals in a parked car.

Staying cool at night

  • When the heat of the day has gone down, open windows in the home to allow the hot air to escape.
  • Choose lightweight, loose sleep wear made of breathable fabric.
  • Choose bedding made of natural fabrics.
  • Have a glass of ice-water next to the bed.

Being aware of the symptoms of heat-related illness

2024-01-31T09:48:33+10:0014 December 2023|
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