County of Marin - News Releases - Excessive Heat Watch

For Immediate Release
July 26, 2019

Public Health Cautions About Excessive Heat

Heat watch reinforces importance of individual and neighborhood preparedness

San Rafael, CA – The National Weather Service (NWS) has issued an Excessive Heat Watch for the Bay Area.  While Marin County is not included in this Watch, NWS has identified areas of moderate heat risk in San Rafael, Novato, Fairfax, Kentfield and Larkspur. 

National Weather Service map showing high temperatures forcasted for regions of northern california for July 27, 2019.The National Weather Service has forecasted extreme high temperatures for parts of Northern California, with several Marin communities facing moderate heat risk.

As temperatures continue to rise with climate change, officials expect to see more severe weather events, including poor air quality days and an increase in Red Flag Warnings. These conditions also increase the probability of Public Safety Power Shutoffs (PSPS).

Heat affects everyone differently. Extremely high or unusually hot temperatures can affect a person’s health, especially when outdoors for long periods of time. Those most vulnerable to extreme heat include older adults, people with chronic medical conditions or mental health conditions and the socially isolated.

“Marin County residents living in affected areas should find relief from high outdoor temperatures,” says Dr. Lisa Santora, the County’s Deputy Public Health Officer.  “We urge people to be aware of the symptoms of heat-related illnesses and to take common sense measures to stay cool and healthy during extreme temperatures."

During this heat wave, residents should take the necessary precautions to prevent serious health effects for heat-related illnesses. Marin Health and Human Services suggests the following tips to stay cool and safe, including:


  • Do not leave children and pets unattended in vehicles
  • Limit outdoor activities
  • Stay in air-conditioned buildings and shelters, including the mall, library or public cooling center 
  • Wear loose, lightweight, light-colored clothing
  • Check on friends, family and neighbors who are sensitive to heat at least twice a day.


  • Drink more water than usual
  • Drink two to four cups of water every hour while working or exercising outside
  • Avoid alcohol or drinks containing high amounts of sugar
  • Make sure family, friends and neighbors drink enough water


  • Check local news for extreme heat warnings and safety tips
  • Keep friends, family and neighbors aware of weather and heat safety information
  • Recognize the signs of a heat illness (below) and if symptoms are severe or life threatening, call 911


Know the signs of heat-related illnesses

Heat-related illness is a spectrum of disorders due to environmental factors, specifically heat exposure. Symptoms can be minor from heat rash, cramps, headache and fatigue, to more severe and even life-threatening conditions like heat exhaustion and heat stroke.


  • Weakness
  • Skin is cold, pale and clammy
  • Weak pulse
  • Fainting and vomiting


  • Move to a cooler location
  • Lie down and loosen clothing
  • Apply cool, wet clothes and cover as much of the body as possible
  • Drink plenty of water (avoid caffeine and alcohol)
  • If vomiting occurs and is continuous, seek medical attention immediately


  • High body temperature (above 103 degrees F)
  • Hot, red, dry or moist skin
  • Rapid and strong pulse
  • Possible unconsciousness


  • Call 911 immediately if symptoms present
  • Move the person to a cooler environment
  • Reduce the person’s body temperature with cool cloths or even a bath
  • Do NOT provide fluids.

Preparation can make a difference in avoiding heat stroke or heat exhaustion.  Be familiar with local cooling center locations. Review additional extreme heat preparation tips recommended by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.  Learn more about the Public Safety Power Shutoff Program and how to prepare for extended power outages.



Dr. Lisa Santora
Deputy Public Health Officer
Health and Human Services

3240 Kerner Blvd.
San Rafael, CA 94901
(415) 473-4163
Email: Dr. Lisa Santora
Marin HHS website