Extreme Heat States

Extreme Heat Conditions, sometimes referred to as heat waves, occur in many states throughout the United States. The States where extreme heat is most likely to occur are: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennesse, Texas, Utah, and Washington.


About Extreme Heat

Extreme heat and heat waves can occur in many different geographical regions throughout the United States.

Western States tend to be dry with many desert regions. These regions are more likely to experience extreme heat because of low humidity and lack of cloud cover. Hot desert air pushes into cooler regions creating uncomfortable and intense heat in normally cooler places.

The Eastern and Southern States can experience prolonged heat waves which are due primarily to a combination of hot weather and high pressure. Heat waves can last for many days and in some cases weeks.

Prolonged exposure to heat can result in hyperthermia. Hyperthermia (sometimes referred to as heat stroke) occurs when the body takes in more heat than it can dissipate. Death or disability occurs if the body temperature gets too high.

A side effect of extreme heat is power failure. Power grids can become overloaded when large numbers of people use their air conditioners at the same time. This makes a bad situation worse because air conditioning is the primary means for cooling a home.

Extreme heat is the number one cause of weather related death in the United States. Between 1992 and 2001, almost 2,200 people were killed as a result of heat exposure. Heat related death outnumber all other weather related events combined. In addition, more than 6,200 people are hospitalized each year due to extreme heat.

Important Survival Tips for Extreme Heat

Here are some tips you can use to help keep your home cooler in times of extreme heat:

  • Install window air conditioners and make sure they are insulated and installed properly with insulation.
  • Check air-conditioning ducts for holes and proper insulation. Consider having an air conditioning professional check the pressure of your air conditioning ducts to see if there are any leaks.
  • Install window reflectors between your curtains and windows, materials like aluminum foil-covered cardboard to a good job of reflecting heat to the outside.
  • Make sure all of your doors and windows are properly insulated to keep hot air out, and cold air in
  • Keep direct sunlight from shining into your house by covering windows with curtains, blinds, or shutters. Outdoor louvers are best at keeping the heat out.
  • Make sure you keep hydrated by drinking lots of water
  • Make sure your car emergency preparedness kit has drinking water

Preparing for Extreme Heat

Being prepared for extreme heat or any other type of disaster requires preparation beforehand. There are three important steps you should complete in preparation for extreme heat. To make this even easier, Essential Packs provides you with a FREE online Emergency Preparedness Planning Guide that takes your step-by-step through the process:

Having the proper emergency preparedness kit, having a plan, and knowing what to do before extreme heat strikes, will greatly improve you and your family’s chances of being safe. Complete the 3-Step Emergency Preparedness Planning Guide today!

Get An Emergency Survival Kit

Getting an Emergency Preparedness Kit for your home, office (or school), and car(s) is an essential first step in being prepared for extreme heat. Emergency Preparedness Kits from Essential Packs, provide you and your family with the emergency supplies your family needs to last for 3 days (72 hours). Deluxe Kits from Essential Packs are compliant with FEMA's guidelines and include important items like: emergency food and drinking water, flashlights, radios, first-aid supplies, sanitation supplies, emergency blankets, waterproof ponchos, and much more.


Get An Extreme Heat Preparedness Kit

Before it's too late...

Residential Office School Car

Emergency WaterFire Safety First Aid Kits

Get an extreme heat kit


For additional help on selecting the right kit, visit Step 1 - Get A Kit of our Emergency Preparedness Planning Guide.

Make a Plan

In order to know what to do when extreme heat occurs, you need to create a Family Emergency Plan. Sit down with your family members and decide how you will get in contact with each other, where you will go, and what you will do in the event of a disaster or emergency.

To make this easy, Essential Packs provides you with a Family Emergency Planning Document that you can download for FREE. Simply open this PDF document and fill-in the blanks, then, print a copy for each family member, and store one copy in your Emergency Preparedness Kit.

You should update your Family Emergency Plan every six months, as phone number, work locations, and other important information could change.

For more help on creating a Family Emergency Plan, visit Step 2 - Make A Plan of our Emergency Preparedness Planning Guide.

Be Informed

The final step to getting prepared is to be informed about what to do before, during, and after extreme heat. FEMA's In-Depth Citizen's Guide to Disaster Preparedness helps you do this by providing you with comprehensive emergency preparedness information a variety of disasters.

Visit Step 3 - Be Informed of our Emergency Preparedness Planning Guide to download FEMA's comprehensive, 200 page book called, "Are You Ready? An In-Depth Guide to Citizen Preparedness".