There's a real heatwave going on outside and I'm currently indoors with my door shut, the curtains closed to shut the sun out and the fan on. Indoors it's a bit cooler now but when I'm working it's absolutely horrible! Whoever said Summer was great probably didn't mean these temperatures. Today it's over 35ºC and Saturday will be over 40ºC! The highest we've ever had in the Netherlands!
Everyone who knows me, also knows I'm not a big fan of Summer and the heat that comes along with it. Here it's always way too stifling. Warm weather isn't that bad, if it stays below 25ºC. But this is not nice anymore, you can hardly breathe let alone work.
What should you do in case of a heatwave really? Like I did shut your door and keep the sun out, but what else?
Extreme Heat Preparedness Checklist
- If installing window air conditioners, install them snugly and insulate if necessary
- Check air-conditioning ducts for proper insulation
- Install temporary window reflectors (for use between windows and drapes), such as aluminum foil-covered cardboard, to reflect heat back outside
- 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
- Keep storm windows up all year
- Listen to local weather forecasts and stay aware of upcoming temperature changes
- Know those in your neighbourhood who are elderly, young, or in poor health—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
Stay Safe During the HeatThe Red Cross recommends taking these steps to stay safe during the heat:
- Listen to your radio for critical updates from the Weather Service
- Never leave children or pets alone in enclosed vehicles
- Eat small meals and eat more often
- Avoid extreme temperature changes
- Limit intake of alcoholic beverages
- Drink plenty of water, even if you do not feel thirsty, and avoid drinks with caffeine.
- Stay on the lowest floor out of the sunshine if air conditioning is not available
- Wear loose-fitting, lightweight, light-colored clothing
- Slow down, stay indoors and avoid strenuous exercise during the hottest part of the day
- Use a buddy system when working in excessive heat
- Take frequent breaks if working outdoors
- Check on family, friends and neighbors who do not have air conditioning, who spend much of their time alone or who are more likely to be affected by the heat
- Check on animals frequently to ensure that they are not suffering from the heat, and ensure they have water and a shady place to rest.