Heatwave Emergencies

Heat can be a serious risk to our health and wellbeing, so everyone needs to carefully manage their daily activity during an extreme weather event.

Five tips to survive the heat

Tip #1 Drink more water

Keep hydrated! Always take a bottle with you. Drink extra water, even if you're not thirsty. Please note: if your doctor normally limits your fluids, check how much to drink during hot weather.

Avoid alcohol, tea, coffee and sugary or fizzy drinks: they make dehydration worse.

Tip #2 Hot cars kill

Never leave kids, adults or pets in hot cars. The temperature inside a parked car can double within minutes.

Tip #3 Keep cool

Seek out air-conditioned buildings to spend your time in on hot days (for example, shopping centres, libraries or cinemas).

Keep your house cool by drawing the curtains or external blinds to block the sun.

You can also keep yourself cool by using damp towels on the back of your neck, splashing cool water on your face and taking cool showers in the day and night.

Stay out of the sun completely if possible, but if you must go out, wear sun protection and take water with you.

Ensure that meat, seafood, and dairy products are always stored below 5˚C.

Tip #4 Plan ahead

Schedule activities such as sport, gardening and exercise while it's cooler, avoid exercise, but if you must go out, wear sun protection and take water with you.

Tip #5 Help others

Look after those most at risk: the elderly and those with medical conditions. Check in on them everyday.

Ensure your pets or companion animals are also well hydrated and have plenty of shade when they're outside.

Remember the five tips to #SurviveTheHeat

Anyone can suffer from heat-related illness such as cramps, heat exhaustion and heatstroke. But some people are more at risk:

  • seniors (over 65 years, particularly those living alone without air-conditioning)
  • infants
  • the overweight or obese
  • pregnant and nursing mothers
  • people with a chronic illness, such as:
    • heart disease
    • high blood pressure
    • diabetes
    • cancer
    • kidney disease
  • people with health conditions that impede sweating, such as scleroderma, cystic fibrosis and extensive scarring from burns
  • people with limited or poor mobility
  • people taking medications that may interfere with the body's ability to regulate temperature

Visit The Department of Health & Human Services website to download the Survive the Heat resources.

For more information or if you require this information in another language, please visit the Health Translations website.

If you're feeling affected by the heat or you believe someone you know may be affected by the heat call Nurse-on-Call on 1300 60 60 24. For life threatening emergencies call 000.

Power Outages due to Heat

Power outages can occur during periods of extreme heat. Be prepared by having the following items to hand:

  • torch
  • extra batteries
  • bottled water
  • first aid kit
  • contact details of your electricity provider

 See VicEmergency's Guide to Power Outages for more information.

Bushfire safety

There are a number of resources available from the Victorian Government to help you look after yourself in a fire event or in a fire-affected area. These address issues such as stress, trauma, smoke and other issues and are available in multiple languages: