During very hot weather, the City will declare a Heat Health Emergency. When we declare a Heat Health Emergency, we activate several City services to ensure our residents stay safe.
During a Heat Health Emergency it’s important to check on loved ones, neighbors, and pets and look out for each other. When daytime temperatures reach the 90s or triple digits and are accompanied by high humidity for two or more days, dehydration, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke can happen. If you think someone is having a medical emergency, call 911.
Remember, during hot weather, NEVER leave children and pets unattended in vehicles under any circumstances. Car interiors can reach lethal temperatures very quickly; It takes only two minutes for a car to reach unsafe temperatures.
A Heat Health Emergency and related weather and emergency information is announced on the City’s website and through the City’s free mass notification system, ReadyPhiladelphia. Sign up for free text alerts by texting READYPHILA to 888-777 or customize your free text or email alerts for alerts and locations important to you by visiting the Office of Emergency Management’s website.
When a Heat Health Emergency is declared:
1. The Philadelphia Corporation for Aging’s Heatline – a special helpline number – is open for calls.
Any Philadelphia resident can call the heatline to get health and safety tips and to talk to medical professionals to discuss conditions and illnesses made worse from the heat. During a Heat Health Emergency you can call the hotline at (215) 765-9040.
2. Some cooling centers will stay open later.
Cooling centers are locations like libraries, senior centers, and recreation centers that are open to the public and have air conditioning. Find your local cooling center.
3. The Office of Homeless Services increases their outreach.
If you see someone on the street who needs help you can call (215) 232-1984. Call 911 if there is a medical emergency.
4. Additional pet safety measures are enforced by Philadelphia’s Animal Care & Control Team.
During excessive heat, all dogs must have one or more separate areas of shade large enough to accommodate the entire body of the dog at one time and protect it from the direct rays of the sun. Owners can face a $500 fine (and can put their pets in grave danger) if they don’t follow ACCT Philly’s requirements. To report a dog left outdoors in very hot weather, call (267) 385-3800.