With temperatures topping 30C often over the past couple weeks, and a good six weeks of potentially steamy weather still to come, now's a good time to remember what to do when the mercury begins to boil. The basics, of course, are to keep cool and stay hydrated, but don't forget to keep a closer eye on children, the elderly and people with disabilities and chronic illnesses. Extreme heat will affect these people more acutely. Cut back on the intense exercise and limit your time outdoors, especially between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m., when ultra-violet radiation is most intense. If you are outside, try to stay in the shade. When you're in the sun, cover up. Wear a wide-brimmed hat, UV protective sunglasses and loose-fitting, long-sleeved shirts and pants. And don't forget your sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. Ideally, it should be applied about halfan-hour before heading outside. Make sure you watch out for the signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke, both very serious conditions that, left untreated, could endanger your life. Heat exhaustion is characterized by heavy sweating, weakness, cold, pale and clammy skin and fainting and vomiting. Get the person out of the sun, give sips of water and, if vomiting continues, seek medical attention. For heat stroke, call 9-1-1 immediately. The Town Parks and Recreation Department offers a variety of swimming schedules that offer residents a fun way to keep cool, and for those needing a break from the heat, keep in mind the Town also operates a number of "cooling centres" at various facilities whenever a heat alert is issued by the Region of Halton. For more information on swimmng schedules and cooling centres contact the Town's Recreation and Parks Department at 905-873-2601 or visit the Town's website at www.haltonhills.ca. Enjoy the warm weather while it's here, but also be aware of the dangers extreme heat poses.