Tips to stay cool

Originally posted in the Department of Executive Services Express

With temperatures already forecast to be above normal this week, keep these tips in mind to stay cool:

Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!
  • Keep window blinds or curtains closed when outdoor temperatures skyrocket. This reduces indoor temps and reduces the strain on the HVAC equipment.
  • Keep windows and doors closed in locations with HVAC.
  • Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!
  • The county recommends against using indoor fans, as they can create “hot zones” in other places in the building and can create a fire hazard. Please don’t block or manipulate air vents or returns.
  • Dress in layers to manage varying temperatures.
  • The County standard for building temperature range is 70-74 degrees.
  • Minimize extended time outside.

If you must be outside:

  • The most important thing to do is to drink lots of water. When it’s really hot, drink up to a quart of water every hour with moderate to heavy physical activity.
  • Carry a water bottle.
  • Consider sports drinks for electrolyte replacement when sweating a lot.
  • Wear loose, light clothing with materials designed to wick sweat.
  • Wear a hat with a brim.
  • Check with your supervisor about adjusting your work hours to start earlier, when it’s cooler.
  • Stop all activity if you become lightheaded, confused, weak, faint or have a pounding heart or trouble breathing. Tell your supervisor if you or a colleague experience any of these symptoms of heat-related illness.

The county offers training for supervisors about how to help employees deal with the heat and keep employees safe. Keep in mind that personal factors, such as fitness level, age, obesity, alcohol use (even the night before), nicotine use, etc., affect an individual’s susceptibility to heat illnesses.

Helpful resources: