How to Stay Safe in the Heat this Summer

July 12, 2017

As the weather turns dangerously hot there is an increased risk of hyperthermia, a condition of having a body temperature greatly above normal. Extreme heat causes significant impacts to people who are living and sleeping on the streets or residing in public housing, senior facilities/centers and homeless shelters throughout the city. Here are tips on how to stay safe in the heat this summer and how to protect homeless men, women and children from hyperthermia.

1. When the temperature or heat index reaches 95 degrees in the District, the Heat Emergency Plan is activated and the District Government opens cooling centers. Everyone should take extra steps to beat the heat by staying in the shade or air-conditioning, drinking plenty of water and visiting cooling centers. You can seek relief from the heat at District recreation facilities, libraries, senior centers, or other air-conditioned buildings. To learn more about cooling centers, click here.

2. Hyperthermia Hotline: If you see a homeless person in the District who needs help in very hot weather, please call the hyperthermia hotline at (202) 339-7093. In a medical emergency, dial 911. Important: If you’re not sure whether the situation is a true emergency, officials recommend calling 911 and letting the call-taker determine whether you need emergency help. Please be prepared to provide the address of the emergency, your phone number and the nature of the emergency.