As a new mom, I’ve had to think about heat safety in many new ways since pregnant women and young children are among the most vulnerable to extreme heat.
While I was pregnant, my neighborhood lost power for a few days during an excruciating heat wave as a result of a power surge. The heat index reached 108°F and to keep safe, I spent time in cooled buildings and ran an extension cord from a neighbor with electricity through my mail slot to power a fan.
In May, I had to buy a fan for my baby’s stroller when the heat index neared 100°F. And I’ve had to spend many days indoors as, so far, 21 days this year have been at least 90°F in the District of Columbia.
So where does a parent – or an outdoor worker, a student, a retiree, or any US resident for that matter – turn to figure out how to keep safe in the face of extreme heat?