Stay Cool, Stay Hydrated, Stay Informed
Wear Appropriate Clothing: Choose lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing.
Stay Cool Indoors: Stay in an air-conditioned place as much as possible. If your home does not have air conditioning, go to the shopping mall or public library-even a few hours spent in air conditioning can help your body stay cooler when you go back into the heat.
- Keep in mind: Electric fans may provide comfort, but when the temperature is in the high 90s, they will not prevent heat-related illness. Taking a cool shower or bath or moving to an air-conditioned place is a much better way to cool off. Use your stove and oven less to maintain a cooler temperature in your home.
Schedule Outdoor Activities Carefully: Try to limit your outdoor activity to when it’s coolest, like morning and evening hours. Rest often in shady areas so that your body has a chance to recover.
Pace Yourself: If you’re not accustomed to working or exercising in a hot environment, start slowly and pick up the pace gradually. If exertion in the heat makes your heart pound and leaves you gasping for breath, STOP all activity. Get into a cool area or into the shade, and rest, especially if you become lightheaded, confused, weak, or faint.
Do Not Leave Children in Cars: Cars can quickly heat up to dangerous temperatures, even with a window cracked open. While anyone left in a parked car is at risk, children are especially at risk of getting a heat stroke or dying. When traveling with children, remember to do the following:
- Never leave infants, children or pets in a parked car, even if the windows are cracked open.
- When leaving your car, check to be sure everyone is out of the car. Do not overlook any children who have fallen asleep in the car.
Avoid Hot and Heavy Meals: They add heat to your body!
Drink Plenty of Fluids: Drink more fluids, regardless of how active you are. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to drink.
- Warning: If your doctor limits the amount you drink or has you on water pills, ask how much you should drink while the weather is hot.
- Stay away from very sugary or alcoholic drinks-these actually cause you to lose more body fluid. Also avoid very cold drinks, because they can cause stomach cramps.
Replace Salt and Minerals: Heavy sweating removes salt and minerals from the body that need to be replaced. A sports drink can replace the salt and minerals you lose in sweat.
- If you are on a low-salt diet, have diabetes, high blood pressure, or other chronic conditions, talk with your doctor before drinking a sports beverage or taking salt tablets.
Keep Your Pets Hydrated: Provide plenty of fresh water for your pets, and leave the water in a shady area. Never leave pets in parked cars, even if the windows are cracked open.
Check for Updates: Check your local news for extreme heat alerts and safety tips and to learn about any cooling shelters in your area.
Know the Signs: Learn the signs and symptoms of heat-related illnesses and how to treat them.
Use a Buddy System: When working in the heat, monitor the condition of your co-workers and have someone do the same for you. Heat-induced illness can cause a person to become confused or lose consciousness. If you are 65 years of age or older, have a friend or relative call to check on you twice a day during a heat wave. If you know someone in this age group, check on them at least twice a day.
Monitor Those at High Risk: Although anyone at any time can suffer from heat-related illness, some people are at greater risk than others:
- Infants and young children
- People 65 years of age or older
- People who are overweight
- People who overexert during work or exercise
- People who are physically ill, especially with heart disease or high blood pressure, or who take certain medications, such as for depression, insomnia, or poor circulation
Stay Cool this Summer! Fire Chief Christopher Lyons
First Energy Utilities Prepared to Handle Summer Heat
Company Offers Tips on How to Use Electricity Wisely During Heat Wave
First Energy Corp.’s distribution and transmission system is prepared to meet the anticipated increase in customer electricity usage associated with summer’s first heat wave expected to spread across the Midwest and mid-Atlantic regions by the end of the week.
“Our comprehensive system inspections and maintenance programs help ensure system reliability when temperatures climb to 90 degrees and customers depend on us to stay comfortable,” said Samuel Belcher, senior vice president of First Energy and president of First Energy Utilities. “From western Ohio to the New Jersey shore, our electric system is designed and maintained to operate safely and effectively even in extreme weather conditions.”
The inspections include using “thermo vision” cameras to capture infrared images that can detect potential problems with electrical equipment in substations and on poles. By identifying hot spots, maintenance and repairs can be conducted prior to a power outage occurring. Helicopter patrols also are used to inspect First Energy transmission lines in advance of the high-demand summer season.
With the extended hot weather coinciding with the Fourth of July holiday, First Energy utilities are reviewing staffing levels and hot weather operational procedures to ensure any localized power outages caused by the excessive heat are handled promptly.
Company employees also are receiving briefings about what steps they can take to stay safe on the job when the heat index rises due to the hot and humid conditions.
Proper hydration, enhanced situational awareness, adjusting work schedules and paying close attention to the condition of fellow employees on the job site are some of the steps that are taken to prevent heat exhaustion or other heat-related illnesses.
First Energy’s utilities also offer some common-sense hot weather tips customers can follow to stay comfortable while using electricity wisely during this period of high demand:
- Set thermostats as high as comfort will allow. Every degree a customer can increase the temperature in their home will result in using about 3 percent less energy during the hottest summer days.
- During sunny weather, close drapes or blinds on windows facing the sun to prevent direct radiant heating from impacting interior temperatures.
- Use fans – moving air cools skin faster, resulting in greater comfort on hot days.
- Use a programmable thermostat to keep temperatures higher when no one is home, and to reduce the temperature before arrival back home.
- Only operate window air conditioners when someone is in the room.
- Keep refrigerators and freezers as full as possible. Frozen or cold items in the refrigerator help keep other items cool, reducing the amount of work the refrigerator has to do to maintain a lower temperature.
- Close rooms that aren’t used regularly during the summer, and close the air conditioning vents in those rooms, as well.
- Avoid using heat-producing appliances during the hottest hours of the day.
The less heat produced at home, the less work the air conditioner will do.
- Consider investing in ENERGY STAR® appliances or heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. First Energy’s utilities may offer rebates on these purchases and tax deductions may apply, as well.
- Check air conditioner and furnace fan filters. Clogged filters waste energy and money by forcing HVAC systems to work harder than necessary.
Other First Energy summer safety tips are available at: www.firstenergycorp.com/safety.
In addition, if summer storms result in downed wires it is important to avoid the area and immediately call First Energy. If you see a downed power line, always assume it is live and dangerous and follow these steps. Report downed power lines immediately by calling1-888-LIGHTSS (888-544-4877). Extra caution should be exercised in areas where downed wires may be tangled in downed tree branches or other debris.
For updated company information, including hot weather tips, customers are urged to visit the 24/7 Power Center at www.firstenergycorp.com/outages.