Tri-Cities expected to hit 100 degrees this week: How you can beat the heat

Safety tips and energy tricks to cool down in June

Saturday marked the start of summer but Monday brought temperatures into the 90’s with a high heat risk announced for central and eastern Washington on Tuesday. With warmer temperatures hitting the region, everyone should become familiar with tips and tricks to beat the heat.

Benton, Franklin, and Yakima Counties are still in phase 1 of Gov. Inslee’s safe start plan meaning most people are still working from home. Kids have been doing distance learning from home for months as well, so people could see the sunshine as an opportunity to get outside. If so, keep in mind how necessary hydration is. The Washington Department of Health shared several tips online about heat safety including:

  • To drink plenty of fluids while avoiding alcohol, caffeine or an abundance of sugar.
  • Eat light meals that include nutrients and vitamins more frequently.
  • Avoid dressing babies in heavy clothing or wrapping them in warm blankets.
  • Make sure pets have plenty of water and never leave them in a parked car.

Lieutenant Aaron Clem with the Kennewick Police Department told KAPP-KVEW at the beginning of every hot season the police department receives more calls about dogs in cars.

“When it gets hot like this, do your dogs a favor and leave them at home,” Clem said, “For their health and safety its best to leave them at home where they can stay cool.”

He said it is far less frequent in our area, but people should still be mindful of children getting left behind in vehicles. Parents should check the backseats of their cars before getting out and locking the doors – even if they didn’t bring their children with them. If someone in the Tri-Cities notices a dog or child locked in a parked vehicle alone, they can call 911 or the non-emergency phone number for the Kennewick Police Department. Clem said police officers, along with firefighters, can locate the driver of the vehicle and help the child or animal out.

Summer has officially started but with much of the area still shutdown, there aren’t many options for recreational activities. Communications and Marketing Manager Hollie Logan with the city of Richland said the community center, library and other public facilities will remain closed through phase 3 of the governor’s reopening plan. Pools and splash pads also remain closed as temperatures get will into the 90’s. People who rely on those public locations will have to stay at home or find somewhere else to beat the summer heat.

If people are still going outside for activites, WADOH shared more tips including:

  • Dress for the weather including wide-brimmed hats, sun block and light-colored, loose-fitting clothes.
  • Take frequent breaks when working outdoors.
  • Plan strenuous outdoor activities for early or late in the day when temperatures are cooler.

Senior Manager of Public Affairs Mike Gonzalez with Franklin PUD says doing some activities outdoors will actually save families money on their utility bill.

“Barbecue as much as you can,” Gonzalez said, “Use your grill outdoors instead of your oven and it’ll save you a lot of heat in your house. It’s a great way to get with your family and save some energy.”

He shared several energy saving tips for parents and kids.

  1. Ditch social media, cell phones and video games for a good book.
  2. Set a timer for how long someone should be in the shower to save on water.
  3. Close doors to keep coll air in certain rooms of the house.
  4. Use the sun to dry wet clothes instead of running the dryer.
  5. Wash dishes by hand or run the dish washer later in the day to avoid peak energy hours.
  6. Use natural light late in the evening instead of using electricity.
  7. Turn the thermostat up over 73 degrees to lower the utility bill.
  8. Use fans to circulate air throughout the house.
  9. Turn off lights with the help of gadgets like clappers or timers.
  10. Invest in a programmable thermostat to fluctuate the temperature inside the home throughout the day.

Gonzalez said some of these tips can be cheap to enact and will help save money over time.