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How To Stay Safe During The Idaho Heat Wave

A dangerous heat wave has settled over the Western U.S., particularly the Northwest. Across Idaho, cities are seeing temperatures 10 to 15 degrees higher than normal for this time of year – putting the state on track to have one of the hottest summers on record.

Keeping cool in heat like this should be top of mind, for yourself and your community. Heat is one of the leading causes of weather-related fatalities, according to the National Weather Service.

An infographic about practicing heat safety that advises to stay hydrated, keep in the shade or indoors, don't leave kids or pets in vehicles, and limit strenuous actives outdoors.

During extreme heat warnings, remember:

  • Stay indoors, with air conditioning when possible
  • Drink plenty of water
  • When outside, limit sun exposure & seek out shade
  • Avoid strenuous activities
  • Wear light or loose-fitting clothing
  • Check on family and neighbors

Extreme heat can also affect our infrastructure – think irrigation, agriculture, transportation and electricity.

Tips from Idaho Power to keep your home cool:

  • Ceiling fans can make the air feel several degrees cooler.
  • Make sure your fan is spinning counterclockwise in the summer to create a downdraft to maximize the cooling sensation
  • But remember: fans cool people, not rooms. Turn them off when you leave the room.
  • Cover windows with drapes or shades
  • Use appliances that create heat (think: oven, dryer, dishwasher) in the early morning or late evening to avoid the hottest times of the day.
  • Or don't use those hot appliances at all! Consider grilling on the porch or line-drying your laundry outside.
  • To cool down, take a cool shower or wear lightweight clothing, rather than cranking the AC.
  • If you're leaving your house for a few days, turn off the air conditioning.

Prolonged exposure to heat can result in heat stroke and heat exhaustion.

Know the signs of heat-related illnesses:

Text equivalent of heat-related illnesses.

At-risk populations for heat-related illness include:

  • Older individuals
  • Pregnant women
  • Newborns
  • Children
  • Individuals experiencing homelessness
  • Those with underlying health conditions
  • Pets
An infographic explaining the populations vulnerable to heat impacts: pregnant women, newborns, children, elderly, chronic illness.

2021 Heat Wave Stories From Boise State Public Radio