A heat wave isn't about sun, fun and getting a great natural tan. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), punishing summer heat is responsible for more fatalities than all other types of weather events. One contributing factor is that people don't always take hot weather as seriously as they should. A little sunshine can make for an entertaining afternoon -- too much can kill you.
Defined as a prolonged period of excessive heat, a heat wave is dangerous business. No one is immune, and the longer the heat persists, the more likely someone in your family will start showing signs of heat-related distress. Pollutants in the air and the reflected heat from city streets and structures can make conditions even worse.
Having a heat wave safety plan and a healthy dose of respect for the destructive potential of this form of extreme weather is a good policy. These five heat wave safety tips will help you recognize and deal with the dangers.