New Delhi, April 29: With a heat wave warning issued for several parts of India, many have taken numerous precautions to beat the heat and survive heat stroke.
Three are several precautions to take during a heat wave. These could be precautions for individuals, offices, employers and even in the agricultural sector.
The Department of Agricultural Meteorology has given a detailed list of do’s and don’ts for various sectors. Check out the full list of do’s and don’ts in the event of a heat wave.
Essential for all
Dos and don’ts of a heat wave
- Listen to the radio; watch television; read the newspaper for local weather news or download the mobile application related to weather information.
- Drink enough water – even if you are not thirsty. People with epilepsy or heart, kidney or liver disease who follow a fluid-restricted diet or who have a problem with water retention should consult a doctor before increasing their fluid intake.
- Use ORS (oral rehydration solution), homemade drinks like lassi, torani (rice water), lemon water, buttermilk, coconut water, etc. to stay hydrated.
- Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored cotton clothing.
- If you are outside, cover your head: use a cloth, a hat or an umbrella. Use sunglasses
to protect your eyes and sunscreen to protect your skin.
- Get trained in first aid.
- Pay particular attention to the elderly, children, sick or overweight as they are
more likely to be victims of excessive heat. (Source imdagrimet)
Employers and workers
- Provide fresh drinking water in the workplace.
- Provide shade clean water, buttermilk, first aid kits with ice packs
and ORS (oral rehydration solution) for all workers.
- Warn workers to avoid direct sunlight.
- Schedule heavy work for the cooler hours of the day.
- Increase the frequency and duration of breaks for outdoor activities.
- Give new workers lighter work and shorter hours in a high heat area.
- Pregnant women and workers with a medical condition should receive
- Notify workers of heat wave alerts. (Source imdagrimet)
- Stay indoors as much as possible.
- Traditional remedies like onion salad and raw mango with salt and cumin
can prevent heatstroke.
- Use fans, damp clothing, and take frequent cold water baths.
- Offer water to vendors and delivery people who come to you or
- Use public transport and carpooling. This will help reduce
warming and heat.
- Do not burn dry leaves, agricultural residues and garbage.
- Conserve water bodies. Practice rainwater harvesting.
- Use energy efficient appliances, clean fuels and alternative sources of
- If you feel dizzy or sick, get medical help right away or have someone take
- you to the doctor immediately. (Source imdagrimet)
For a cooler home
- Use solar reflective white paint, cold roof technology, light and cross ventilation and heat insulation for low cost cooling. You can also keep haystacks or grow vegetation on rooftops.
- Install temporary window reflectors such as cardboard covered with aluminum foil to reflect heat to the outside.
- Keep your home cool, use dark colored curtains, tinted windows/shutters or sunshades and open windows at night. Try to stay on lower floors.
- Green roofs, green walls and indoor plants reduce heat by naturally cooling the building, reducing air conditioning requirements and releasing waste heat.
- Keep the AC temperature at 24 degrees or more. It will reduce your electricity bill and improve your health. (Source imdagrimet)
When building a new house
- Use cavity wall technology instead of regular walls.
- Build thick walls. They keep the interiors fresh.
- Build lattice walls and louvered openings. They allow maximum air
flow while blocking the heat.
- Use natural materials like lime or mud to cover the walls.
- Avoid glass, if possible.
- Consult a building technology expert before construction.
- Treatment of a person with sunstroke
- Use a damp cloth / pour water on the victim’s head.
- Give the person ORS to drink or lemon sarbat/torani or whatever
useful for rehydrating the body.
- Take the person immediately to the nearest health center.
- If you constantly have a high body temperature, throbbing headaches,
dizziness, weakness, nausea or disorientation in the summer, call a
ambulance. (Source imdagrimet)
Not to do
- Avoid exposure to the sun, especially between 12:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m.
- Avoid strenuous outdoor activities in the afternoon.
- Don’t go barefoot.
- Avoid cooking during peak hours. Open doors and windows to ventilate
cooking zone properly.
- Avoid alcohol, tea, coffee and soft drinks that dehydrate
- Avoid high protein, salty, spicy and fatty foods. Do not eat expired foods.
- Do not leave children or pets alone in parked vehicles.
- Avoid using incandescent bulbs which can generate unnecessary heat, just like computers or household appliances. (Source imdagrimet)
Dos and Don’ts of a Heat Wave in Agriculture
- Apply light and frequent irrigation to standing crops.
- Increase irrigation frequency at critical growth stages.
- Mulch with crop residues, straw, polythene or mulch the soil to
retain soil moisture.
- Water only in the evening or early in the morning.
- Use sprinkler irrigation.
- If your area is prone to heat waves – adopt windbreaks/shelters. (Source imdagrimet)
- Keep animals in the shade and give them plenty of clean, cold water to drink.
- Do not make them work between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.
- Cover the roof of the shed with straw, paint it white or coat it with manure mud to
reduce the temperature.
- Use fans, water spray and foggers in the shed.
- In extreme heat, spray water and take cattle to a body of water to cool off. • Give them green grass, protein and fat bypass supplement, mineral blend and
salt. Graze them during cooler hours.
- Provide curtains and adequate ventilation in the coop. Not to do
- Avoid grazing/feeding livestock during noon hours. (Source imdagrimet)
Article first published: Friday, April 29, 2022, 12:36 p.m. [IST]