Keep yourself, family, pets and community safe during the heat
We've complied tips on how to keep yourself, family, neighbors and pets safe during summertime weather.
For the current forecast, visit The National Weather Service.
Find out more information on all cooling centers by calling 211 or visiting their website. You can also visit the county’s cooling centers webpage for the status of the opening of cooling centers in Canby, Oregon City and Molalla.
Be careful while swimming in rivers, lakes and creeks
At this time of the year, the water is still extremely cold and currents are strong and fast
AMR River Rescue Program wants people to know that water is still extremely cold (in the 40s Fahrenheit) and currents are strong and fast this time of year.
If you swim without being prepared for these conditions, it can turn tragic. If you do go to a river to cool off, remember to be safe, wear a life jacket and stay in shallow/calm areas.
AMR River Rescue lifeguards will be on duty at High Rocks Park and Glenn Otto Park starting May 27.
Here are some best practices to swim safely:
- Children, inexperienced swimmers and all boaters should wear U.S. Coast Guard-approved life Jackets.
- Provide close and constant attention to children you are supervising in or near water.
- Fence pools and spas with adequate barriers, including four-sided fencing.
- Learn swimming and water survival skills.
- Always swim in a lifeguarded area or stick to the shallow and calm areas.
- Always swim with a buddy.
- Don’t use alcohol or drugs (including certain prescription medications) before or while swimming, diving or supervising swimmers.
You should keep cool at home by:
- Do not rely on a fan as your primary cooling device. Fans create air flow and a false sense of comfort, but do not reduce body temperature or prevent heat-related illnesses.
- Plan ahead by asking your doctor how your medication may exacerbate heat related illness.
- Have a transportation plan if you need to leave your home and go to a cooling center.
- Cover windows with drapes or shades.
- Weather-strip doors and windows.
- Use window reflectors specifically designed to reflect heat back outside.
- Add insulation to keep the heat out.
- Use a powered attic ventilator, or attic fan, to regulate the heat level of a building’s attic by clearing out hot air.
- Install window air conditioners and insulate around them.
When it’s hot, you should:
- Take cool showers or baths
- Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated, avoid alcohol and sugary drinks.
- Avoid high energy activities or work outside, if possible.
- Watch for signs of heat exhaustion like heat cramps, headaches, fatigue, and excess sweating.
- Heat stroke is extremely dangerous, if you experiences the following symptoms, call 911.
- Red, hot, and dry skin and no sweating
- Strong and rapid pulse
- Extremely high body temperate that exceeds 103 degrees F.
- If staying cool at home becomes difficult go to a cooling center. For information about all open cooling centers, and transportation options, call 211. You can also visit our cooling center webpage.
Take care of those around you:
- Check in on elders and vulnerable neighbors during warm weather — twice a day is best.
- Never leave a person, child or a pet in a hot car.
- Check regularly on how babies and toddlers, seniors, people taking mental health medications and people with heart disease or high blood pressure are doing.
- Share a fan.
- Invite a friend to a splash pad, movie, a mall or museum.
Take care of those around you:
- Limit your outdoor activity to morning and evening hours.
- Rest often in shady areas.
- Wear a wide-brimmed hat
- Use sunscreen of SPF 15 or higher (the most effective products say “broad spectrum” or “UVA/UVB protection” on their labels) and reapply as directed.
- Consider packing a couple extra bottles of water, these could be used for you and your family or anyone you see that looks like they could use a cool drink of water.
- Know that the heat index (what the temperature feels like when humidity is involved) plays a role. When sweat isn't able to evaporate from the body due to high humidity, the body has difficulty regulating its temperature and cooling itself off. The result? heat stroke, cramps and exhaustion are all likely to happen. Check out the chart from the National Weather Service indicating the levels of the heat index.
If you have a pet
- Never leave a pet in a parked car on a hot day. Temperatures inside a car can soar quickly to dangerous levels even if the outside temperature is in the 70s.
- Leave your pet at home during warm or hot weather.
- Be sure your pet has access to shade or a cool room and to plenty of drinking water.
- Exercise your dog early or late in the day to avoid the hottest times of the day.
- Remember that paw pads can easily burn on hot pavement. The rule is: if you cannot rest the back of your hand on the surface for more than 5 seconds, it is too hot for your dog to walk on.
- Prevent sunburn by keeping your pet out of the sun between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., and rubbing sun block (that is approved for use on pets) on unprotected areas such as the skin around the lips, tip of the nose and ears.
- Watch for signs of heatstroke: heavy panting, high fever, rapid heartbeat, vomiting, confusion and/or collapse. If heatstroke is suspected, call a veterinarian immediately and apply cool (not ice cold) water-soaked towels to hairless areas of the animal’s body (armpits, stomach, feet) while applying moving air (from a fan or AC vent) to lower its temperature.
Public Transit Resources
TriMet does not charge fares to get to and from a cooling center site during extreme heat. Please check TriMet's website or call customer service (503-238-7433) to verify. NOTE: If going by bus, please tell the operator as you come on board that you’re heading to a cooling center. Riders should plan for some heat-related delays, as MAX and WES trains have to slow down when it gets too hot to prevent damaging the system.
In other areas of the county, please call dispatch for assistance:
- Sandy Area Metro (SAM) and Mt. Hood Express
- Wilsonville Metro (SMART)
- South Clackamas (SCTD – Molalla)
- Canby Area Transit (CAT)
- Clackamas Connects Shuttles
For other transportation resources, call 2-1-1 for assistance.
Garbage service may be earlier than normal
When we experience extreme heat, garbage and recycling collection will begin earlier in the morning than usual to protect workers from the expected extreme heat. Please set your carts out the night before. If your pickup is missed, please contact your collector directly.
Only call 9-1-1 in an emergency that is actively happening
Call 9-1-1 for emergencies that are actively happening when you make the call. Do not call 9-1-1 for illegal fireworks use, unless you see something on fire.
For non-emergency matters, call 503-655-8211.