Heatwaves – be prepared for extreme heat

  • Heatwaves can occur in any location.
  • Heatwaves occur when the minimum and maximum temperatures are much hotter than usual for three or more days at a location.
  • The heatwave warning system gives you information once it has been forecast by the Bureau of Meteorology (BOM) (external site).

Heatwave alert warning levels

The Australian Warning System (external site) is a new national approach to information and calls to actions for hazards including extreme heat.

Heatwave alerts have three warning levels indicating the increasing risk to your health. It is important to stay up-to-date with relevant alerts to help you prepare for and lessen the impact of extreme heat.

Advice – stay up to-date

Prepare now for a heatwave that will affect your area in the coming days.

Stay-up-to-date in case the situation changes.

Watch and act - start taking action

Conditions are changing.

You need to start taking action and prepare for very hot conditions.

Emergency warning - act immediately

You need to act immediately.

Drink water, stay indoors or seek out air-conditioned places. Be aware of heat stress, and check on family and friends, especially the elderly.

Staying healthy in the heat

Icon of person with sun behind them

Information for carers

Caring during extreme heat periods.

Where to get help

  • If you have severe symptoms, always dial triple zero (000) to call an ambulance in a medical emergency
  • See your doctor
  • Ring healthdirect on 1800 022 222

Last reviewed: 18-11-2022

Disaster Preparedness Management Unit

This publication is provided for education and information purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional advice. Information about a service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace professional advice. Readers should note that over time currency and completeness of the information may change. All users should seek advice from a qualified professional for answers to their questions.