A heat alert has been declared today for Toronto in Ontario, Canada and will be in effect until further notice.

During a Heat Alert, there is a greater risk of suffering from heat-related illness for a number of groups, including:

  • isolated adults and seniors
  • people with chronic and pre-existing illnesses,
  • infants and young children,
  • people on certain medications and
  • those who are homeless.

For family, friends and neighbours, especially the people in the above groups at risk, the City of Toronto encourages us to:

  • call or
  • visit them, and
  • make sure they are cool and drinking plenty of fluids;
  • “a few hours in a cooler environment during extremely hot weather lowers the core body temperature and helps save lives. “

Furthermore, landlords of buildings without air conditioning can help by providing a dedicated cooling room for residents to escape the heat.

And community agencies are encouraged to educate clients on the risks of heat-related illness and to call or check those clients at increased risk of heat-related illness during a heat alert.

When an alert is declared, those who need assistance or have heat-related inquiries may call:

Phone within Toronto city limits: 311

Phone outside city limits: 416-392-CITY (2489)
(can be used within Toronto if you can’t reach 311)

TTY customers: 416-338-0TTY (0889)
Fax: 416-338-0685
E-mail: 311@toronto.ca

If your matter is urgent, please call City of Toronto. They are open 24/7.

Always call 911 for emergencies.

You can “Beat the Heat” by taking these City-advised precautions:

  • Drink lots of water or natural fruit juices – do not wait to feel thirsty.
  • Go to air conditioned places, including shopping malls or one of many local libraries or community centres located in each neighbourhood
  •  Wear loose fitting, light coloured clothing made of breathable fabric.
  • Stay out of the sun.
  • Reduce strenuous physical outdoor activity, especially between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  • Never leave the elderly, children or pets unattended in a car.

Please click here for more information on how to Beat the Heat.

Often high air pollution occurs during hot weather conditions.

Thus, people with heart and lung conditions as well as seniors and children should pay special attention to the hourly Air Quality Health Index levels and forecasts available at http://www.airhealth.ca.

Furthermore, Ontario is encouraging workplaces to make every effort to prevent heat stress, which can lead to worker illness, disability and even death.

Heat stress as an occupational hazard happens when working where it is hot puts stress on the body’s cooling system.

When heat is combined with other stresses such as hard physical work, fluid loss, fatigue or some medical conditions, it could lead to serious consequences for the worker.

Employers must take steps to protect their employees from the effects of this heat stress hazard such as:

  • reducing the temperature and humidity through air cooling;
  • providing air-conditioned rest areas;
  • increasing the frequency and length of rest breaks;
  • scheduling strenuous jobs for cooler times of the day and
  • providing cool drinking water near worker and remind them to drink a cup of water about every 20 minutes;
  • assigning additional workers or slow down the pace of work; and
  • training workers to recognize the signs and symptoms of heat stress and start a “buddy system” since people are not likely to notice their own symptoms.

Symptoms of heat stress can include excessive sweating, headache, rashes, cramping, dizziness and fainting.

Please note the following reasons for heat stress to be a life-threatening situation:

  • Workers most at risk for heat stress include those in hot environments – such as smelters, furnaces, bakeries – and those who work outside in the summer.
  • Prolonged exposure to heat stress can lead to heat stroke, a life-threatening condition.
  • The victims of heat stroke are often unable to notice the symptoms, and their survival may depend on co-workers’ ability to identify symptoms and to seek immediate medical assistance.
Heat Alert for Toronto May 28, 2012

Heat Alert for Toronto May 28, 2012

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

NEWS RELEASE

May 28, 2012

Heat alert declared

Dr. David McKeown, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health, has issued a Heat Alert for today.  The Heat Alert will be in effect until further notice.

During a Heat Alert, the public is encouraged to call or visit family, friends and neighbours, especially isolated adults and seniors who are at greater risk of suffering from heat-related illness, to make sure they are cool and drinking plenty of fluids. Other groups at risk include people with chronic illnesses, limited mobility and with certain mental health illnesses, infants and young children, people on certain medications and those who are homeless.

The public is advised to “Beat the Heat” by taking these precautions:

  • Drink lots of cool water even before you feel thirsty
  • Go to air conditioned places, including shopping malls or one of many local libraries or community centres located in each neighbourhood
  • Take cool showers or baths or use cool wet towels to cool down
  • Wear loose light coloured breathable clothing and when outdoors wear a wide-brimmed hat
  • Avoid the sun and stay in the shade or use an umbrella
  • Reschedule or plan outdoor activities during the cooler parts of the day
  • Never leave seniors, children or pets unattended in a car

Landlords of buildings without air conditioning are encouraged to provide a dedicated cooling room for residents to escape the heat. Community agencies are encouraged to educate clients on the risks of heat-related illness and to call or check those clients at increased risk of heat-related illness during alerts.

When an alert is declared, those who need assistance or have heat-related inquiries may call 311.

For more information on How to Beat the Heat, visit http://www.toronto.ca/health

Often high air pollution occurs during hot weather conditions. People with heart and lung conditions, seniors and children should pay special attention to the hourly Air Quality Health Index levels and forecasts available at www.airhealth.ca

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.7 million people. Toronto’s government is dedicated to delivering customer service excellence, creating a transparent and accountable government, reducing the size and cost of government and building a transportation city. For information on non-emergency City services and programs, Toronto residents, businesses and visitors can dial 311, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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