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For Immediate Release
County of Sonoma health officials issue heat alert
SANTA ROSA, CA | August 31, 2022
The Sonoma County Department of Health Services has issued a Heat Alert in response to the National Weather Service’s Excessive Heat Warning for the Bay Area from 11 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 3 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 6.
The heat alert applies to all of Sonoma County, where high temperatures are forecast in the high 90s and 100s. The heat is expected to arrive on Friday and last through Tuesday, with Sunday and Monday being the hottest days. Santa Rosa is forecast to hit 104 degrees on Monday, while Cloverdale is forecast to hit 109 degrees. Overnight lows are expected to be in the 60s and 70s.
Cooling centers, where people can escape the heat, are planned for several locations in the county. They include the Finley Community Center in Santa Rosa, 2060 W. College Ave.; the Windsor Senior Recreation Center in Windsor, 9231 Foxwood Dr., off Los Amigos Road; and the Grange Hall in The Springs north of Sonoma, 18627 Highway 12. A complete list of cooling centers can be found at socoemergency.org/emergency/cooling-centers/. Some may require masks to reduce the risk COVID-19 spread; check with your local cooling center to see if masks are required.
Excessive heat poses a significant health risk, particularly to the elderly, young children, pregnant women and those with chronic diseases. Sonoma County Deputy Health Officer Dr. Kismet Baldwin urges residents to take simple steps to stay cool and help prevent heat-related illnesses.
“Extreme heat can pose dangers, but there are many things we can do to reduce heat-related problems,” said Dr. Baldwin. “Keep in close contact with family, friends and neighbors, especially those who have preexisting medical conditions or work outdoors. It’s important to remind one another to seek shade, drink water and get medical assistance if signs of heat fatigue become prevalent.”
To protect yourself and your family when the weather is very hot, follow the tips below:
- Never leave anyone including children or pets in a parked car, even briefly. Temperatures in the car can become dangerous within a few minutes.
- Use air-conditioning to cool down or go to an air-conditioned building such as a mall or movie theater.
- Drink plenty of fluids. Don't wait until you're thirsty to drink more fluids. Avoid alcohol, caffeine and sugary drinks. If your doctor generally limits the amount of fluid you drink or has you on water pills, ask how much you should drink while the weather is hot.
- Beat the heat with cool showers and baths.
- Stay out of the sun as much as possible.
- When possible, avoid strenuous activity during the hottest part of the day (between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.) and take regular breaks from physical activity.
- Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing to help keep cool.
- Wear sunscreen and a ventilated hat (e.g., straw or mesh) when in the sun and even if it is cloudy.
- Be aware that some medicines affect the body's ability to sweat and stay cool, including antihistamines, antidepressants, over-the-counter sleeping pills, anti-diarrhea pills, beta blockers, and psychiatric drugs. Do NOT stop taking medication unless instructed to do so by your doctor.
- Check on your neighbors, especially the elderly or those in poor health to see if they need assistance.
For more information about keeping cool in the summer heat, visit the county emergency information website, socoemergency.org/emergency/extreme-heat/ or call 211. Updates on heat conditions are available from the National Weather Service www.weather.gov.