Coping with Extreme Heat in New York City: Tips and Strategies

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Summer in New York City can be an exciting time, but it also comes with its challenges, including extreme heat. As reported by The New York Times, the city recently experienced a hazardous heat wave, with temperatures reaching as high as 92 degrees in Central Park. During such times, it is essential to take precautions to prevent heat-related illnesses and stay safe.

The Hazards of Extreme Heat

Extreme heat can cause a range of health problems, from heat exhaustion to heatstroke, which can be life-threatening. The risks are higher for older adults, young children, and people with chronic medical conditions. The symptoms of heat exhaustion include heavy sweating, weakness, dizziness, and headache. Heatstroke, on the other hand, is characterized by a high body temperature, confusion, and loss of consciousness.

How to Stay Safe During Hazardous Heat?

To stay safe during hazardous heat, it’s essential to take precautions, such as:

  1. Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water and avoid alcoholic and caffeinated drinks, as they can dehydrate you.
  2. Stay indoors: If possible, stay indoors during the hottest parts of the day, usually between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.
  3. Dress appropriately: Wear loose-fitting, lightweight, and light-colored clothing.
  4. Use sunscreen: Apply sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays.
  5. Check on vulnerable people: Check on older adults, young children, and people with chronic medical conditions, as they are more at risk of heat-related illnesses.

Coping with Extreme Heat: Practical Tips and Strategies

In addition to the above precautions, there are several practical tips and strategies you can use to cope with extreme heat, including:

  1. Use cooling centers: The city has set up dozens of cooling centers across the five boroughs, where you can go to cool off and stay safe.
  2. Use air conditioning: If you have air conditioning at home, use it to stay cool. If you don’t, consider going to a public place with air conditioning, such as a library or shopping mall.
  3. Take cool showers: Taking cool showers or baths can help lower your body temperature and keep you cool.
  4. Use fans: Fans can help circulate air and make you feel cooler. If you don’t have a fan, consider buying one or visiting a public place with fans, such as a movie theater or museum.
  5. Eat light meals: Eating light meals, such as salads and fruits, can help keep you cool.

Staying Cool in New York City: Finding Relief from the Heat

New York City has several places where you can find relief from the heat, including:

  1. Public swimming pools: The city has over 50 public swimming pools, which are free and open to the public.
  2. Splash pads: There are several splash pads located across the city, where you can cool off and have fun.
  3. Shaded parks: New York City has many shaded parks, which are perfect for picnics and relaxation.
  4. Museums and movie theaters: Many museums and movie theaters have air conditioning, making them perfect places to escape the heat.


In conclusion, extreme heat can be hazardous, but with the right precautions, you can stay safe and cool. Remember to stay hydrated, stay indoors during the hottest parts of the day, and use practical tips and strategies to cope with the heat. Stay safe and enjoy the summer!

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