NewsMissoula County


Western Montana heat prompts safety reminder

Heat Wave 1280x720
Posted at 10:19 AM, Jun 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-29 12:21:11-04

MISSOULA — Potential record-setting heat in Western Montana has prompted local health officials to remind people to be on the lookout for signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

"Hot temperatures can lead to the occurrence of heat-related illness in humans and animals. Please take appropriate precautions to prevent this from happening,” Missoula City-County Health Officer D’Shane Barnett noted.

There are several things that people can do to avoid becoming a victim of heat stroke including drinking plenty of water, reduce exposure to the sun and heat, wear lightweight clothing and check in on friends and relatives.

“Heatwaves are especially dangerous to the elderly, young children, and pets,” Barnett noted in a news release. “If you see a child or pet left unattended in a vehicle during these conditions, try to locate the vehicle owner as quickly as possible. If you are not able to locate them, dial 911 and they can provide you with instructions for how to proceed.”

People should know the signs and symptoms of heat exhaustion and heatstroke.

A list of the symptoms can be found on the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) website including the following:

Heat-Related Illnesses

Heat Stroke


  • High body temperature (103°F or higher)
  • Hot, red, dry, or damp skin
  • Fast, strong pulse
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Losing consciousness (passing out)


  • Call 911 right away-heat stroke is a medical emergency
  • Move the person to a cooler place
  • Help lower the person’s temperature with cool cloths or a cool bath
  • Do not give the person anything to drink

Heat Exhaustion


  • Heavy sweating
  • Cold, pale, and clammy skin
  • Fast, weak pulse
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Muscle cramps
  • Tiredness or weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Fainting (passing out)


  • Move to a cool place
  • Loosen your clothes
  • Put cool, wet cloths on your body or take a cool bath
  • Sip water

Get medical help right away if:

  • You are throwing up
  • Your symptoms get worse
  • Your symptoms last longer than 1 hour

The Health Department notes that "heat stroke is an emergency, and you should call 911 if you see someone experiencing symptoms. We can all do our part to prevent and address heat related illness."