Prepare for Extreme Heat with “Heat Ready CA”
High temperatures during summer are typical, but as the planet continues to become hotter and drier, Californians should be prepared to feel record temperatures and experience extreme heat events.
Stay hydrated and safe from the heat this summer
Sacramento, Calif. – High temperatures during summer are typical, but as the planet continues to become hotter and drier, Californians should be prepared to feel record temperatures and experience extreme heat events. Extreme heat is characterized as two or more days of hotter temperatures that are well above normal conditions for an area, with no relief or cooling off at night. Extreme heat can pose significant health risks, worsen California’s drought conditions, and increase the likelihood of wildfires.
As families enjoy the summer, it is critical for individuals to recognize the urgent need to protect themselves, their communities, and the environment. California’s Office of Community Partnerships and Strategic Communications’ “Heat Ready CA” campaign aims to help prevent the worst effects of extreme heat emergencies and ensure the well-being of all, especially those in vulnerable communities. The goal is to raise awareness about the dangers of extreme heat and encourage Californians to create extreme heat plans to stay cool, hydrated and ultimately keep individuals and their loved ones safer.
“Summer heat waves can be dangerous, especially for young children, older adults, people with chronic diseases and disabilities, outdoor workers, people who are unhoused and those who are pregnant,” said CDPH Director and State Public Health Officer Dr. Tomás Aragón. “It’s important to protect yourself and your loved ones by checking in on friends and family who may need assistance, monitoring weather forecasts, staying hydrated, limiting time outdoors, and visiting cooling centers.”
The top three tips to beat the heat this summer and prevent heat-related illness include:
- staying hydrated,
- visiting air-conditioned spaces, and
- knowing the signs of heat illness.
Those at greater risk of heat illness include young children, older adults, pregnant individuals, and those with disabilities or chronic health conditions. Californians living in areas with limited access to shade or air conditioning are also at risk. Stay alert to headaches, fatigue, and dizziness, which may be signs of heat illness, such as dehydration, and can be avoided by drinking at least 2 cups of water every hour.
As part of California’s commitment to promote proper hydration during extreme heat, Heat Ready CA and Cal Fresh encourage individuals to explore ways to add flavor to water for a more refreshing taste, and are sharing a delicious watermelon and strawberry infused water recipe that makes staying hydrated during hot summer days a refreshing experience:
WATERMELON AND STRAWBERRY WATER RECIPE:
1 cup watermelon, cut into small pieces (1-2 inches)
10 strawberries, tops removed and sliced into small pieces
2 quarts of cold still drinking water
- Wash all produce by dunking in a bowl of water.
- Collect, slice, and measure all ingredients before starting to prepare the recipe.
- Add all ingredients plus enough cold water to fill a 2-quart pitcher. Chill overnight in the refrigerator for the most flavor, and store in the refrigerator until ready to drink. The fruit will stay fresh in the water for up to 48 hours after being prepared.
- After you drink the water, you can eat the fruit or blend it into a smoothie.
With rising temperatures and more expected extreme heat events, Californians must stay informed and discover new ways to ensure their safety during extreme heat events, such as infused water recipes. For more Cal Fresh water recipes, visit Calfreshhealthyliving.cdph.ca.gov. To find more information about Heat Ready CA and resources to create an extreme heat plan, go to HeatReadyCA.com.