For Immediate Release
June 30, 2011

KDHE Office of Communications
communications@kdheks.gov, 785-296-0461

Staying Safe in the Sun and Heat

Topeka—Fourth of July weekend is a great time for families, neighbors and communities to get together and celebrate outdoors. The Kansas Departments on Aging (KDOA) and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) are reminding Kansans to protect themselves in hot summer temperatures.

The National Weather Service statistical data shows that heat causes more fatalities per year than floods, lightning, tornadoes and hurricanes combined. It is vital to remember that seniors, infants, children and people with chronic medical conditions are more prone to heat stress and heat-related illness.

“When temperatures start to rise, it’s important to know how to protect yourself and others, especially those who are at greater risk of heat-related illness,” said Shawn Sullivan, Secretary of KDOA. “If you have a friend, relative or neighbor who doesn’t have air-conditioning, now would be a good time to talk with them about getting into a cooler place.”

“The best defense against heat-related illness is prevention,” said Dr. Robert Moser, Secretary of KDHE. “Staying cool and making simple changes in your fluid intake, activities and clothing during hot weather can help you remain safe and healthy.”

Heat-related Illness

Heat-related illness is always of concern during hot weather, and may be characterized as heat stress, heat exhaustion or heat stroke.

Staying Cool

Follow these steps to minimize your risk of heat-related illness:

For more information on dealing with extreme summer heat, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web site at www.bt.cdc.gov/disasters/extremeheat/index.asp.