Fairfax County Offers Guidance for Staying Safe and Cool During Summer Heat


June 13, 2008

News Highlights

  • Heat takes the greatest toll on the very young and the very old.
  • To stay cool, drink plenty of water, eat light meals, wear light-colored clothing and spend time in an
    air-conditioned place.
  • Never leave children or pets unattended in a car – not even for a few minutes.

More Information 

With the arrival of warmer weather and the 2008 summer season, Fairfax County has information and resources available for residents to ensure a safe and fun summertime.

Heat takes the greatest toll on the very young and the very old, especially children younger than 5 and adults older than 65. Intense summer temperatures also greatly affect people who are sick or take certain medications, including diuretics, antihistamines, beta-blockers and tranquilizers.

To keep cool, follow this general advice:

  • Drink plenty of water. Avoid caffeinated or alcoholic beverages because they dehydrate the body.
  • Stay indoors as much as possible. Spend time in an air-conditioned place if possible; resting for just two hours in air conditioning can significantly reduce heat-related illnesses.
  • Slow down. Avoid strenuous physical activities or reschedule them for the coolest part of the day, usually the early morning.
  • Eat light meals.
  • Don’t take salt tablets unless directed by a physician.
  • Wear light-colored clothing, which helps reflect sunlight.
  • Wear sunscreen to prevent sunburn. Sunburn makes it more difficult for your body to cool off.
  • Never leave children or pets unattended in a car — not even for a few minutes. Even with the windows slightly open, the temperature in a car on a 93-degree day can soar to 125 degrees in just 20 minutes and approximately 140 degrees in 40 minutes.

Residents who need immediate, life-saving help, should call 9-1-1. For other safety help, call the public safety non-emergency phone number at 703-691-2131, TTY 711.

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Fairfax County Office of Public Affairs
12000 Government Center Parkway, Suite 551
Fairfax, VA 22035-0065
Contact: Merni Fitzgerald, Director of Public Affairs
703-324-3187, TTY 711, Fax 703-324-2010
Media Pager: 703-324-NEWS (6397)
publicaffairs@fairfaxcounty.gov

Fairfax County is committed to nondiscrimination on the basis of disability in all county programs, services and activities. To request this information in an alternate format, call the Office of Public Affairs at 703-324-3187, TTY 711.


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