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KFL&A Public Health Issues Heat Warning

July 18, 2019 -

A heat health warning has been issued by KFL&A Public Health to advise area health professionals and community service providers of a period of hot and humid weather which may have adverse health effects.  According to Environment Canada, the hot weather conditions are forecast to begin Friday July 19, 2019 and persist until Sunday July 21, 2019. Daytime high temperatures are expected to reach the mid-thirties with a humidex of 41 degrees Celsius, while the night-time low temperature is not likely to drop below the mid-twenties degrees Celsius. This warning is in effect for all areas within Kingston, Frontenac and Lennox & Addington Counties. 

A heat warning is issued by Environment Canada for the KFL&A area when the forecasted maximum temperature is expected to be greater than or equal to 31ºC and the lowest night-time temperature is anticipated to be at or above 20ºC for a period of 2 days or longer. A warning will also be issued if the anticipated humidex is 40ºC or warmer for a period of 2 days or longer.

Humidex values describe how the hot and humid weather feels to the average person. It combines the temperature and humidity readings into one number to reflect the perceived temperature. The higher the humidex, the harder it is for perspiration to evaporate to cool the body.

During heat events everyone is at risk; however, the health risks are greatest for:

  • older adults,
  • infants and young children,
  • people with chronic illnesses or who take certain medications,
  • people who work or who exercise in the heat, and
  • people without access to air-conditioned spaces.

Being prepared is key to protecting communities from negative health impacts.  KFL&A Public Health recommends taking the following actions to stay cool:

  • Drinking plenty of cool liquids, especially water, before feeling thirsty.
  • Avoiding direct sun exposure, for example, by sitting under a tree, wearing a wide-brimmed, breathable hat, or using an umbrella.
  • Taking a break from the heat by spending a few hours in a cool place; take cool showers.
  • Rescheduling strenuous outdoor activity or planning outdoor activities during cooler parts of the day.
  • Wearing loose-fitting, light-coloured clothing made of breathable fabric.
  • Blocking the sun out by closing awnings, curtains or blinds during the day.
  • Never leaving people or pets in your care inside a parked vehicle or in direct sunlight.

KFL&A Public Health encourages people to visit neighbours, friends, and older family members frequently, especially those who are chronically ill, and those at higher risk, to make sure that they are cool and hydrated.

More information on protective measures can be found on KFL&A Public Health's website www.kflaph.ca