UV index, heat and wind chill products
UV Index poster and wallet card
Documents describing Canada's UV Index. It includes sun safety tips and a chart with sun safety advice for different UV Index values.
UV Index - text version
The UV Index
Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) developed the UV Index to inform Canadians about the strength of the sun's ultraviolet (UV) rays. UV rays can cause sunburns, eye cataracts, skin aging and skin cancer. The higher the UV Index number, the stronger the sun's rays, and the greater the need to take precautions.
The table below outlines the sun protection actions recommended at different levels of the UV Index.
|UV Index||Description||Sun protection actions|
Sun protection tips
- The amount of UV you receive depends on both the strenth of the sun's rays (measured by the UV Index) and the amount of time you spend in the sun. Reduce your time in the sun - seek shade, particularly between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. from April to September.
- Cover-up, wear a broad-brimmed hat, a shirt with long sleeves and wrap-around sun-glasses or one with side shields.
- Use sunscreen - with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or higher, with both UVA and UVB protection. Apply generously before going outside, and reapply often, especially after swimming or exercise.
- Listen for ECCC's UV Index - it's included in your local weather forecast whenever it is forecast to reach 3 (moderate) or more that day.
UV Index infographic: what UV rays can cause
UV Infographic - text version
What UV rays can cause
Weakening of the immune system
|Colour||Exposure category||UV Index|
|Green||Low||0 - 2|
|Yellow||Moderate||3 - 5|
Keep children cool! Protect your child from extreme heat
You're active in the heat. You're at risk! Protect yourself from extreme heat
It's much too hot! Protect yourself from extreme heat
Wind Chill poster and wallet card
Documents describing Canada's Wind Chill Index. It includes sun safety tips and a chart with sun safety advice for different UV Index values.
Wind Chill - text version
Canada's Wind Chill Index
Helping you Deal with the Cold You Feel
The cooling sensation caused by the combined effect of temperature and wind is called wind chill. The wind chill index is not actually a real temperature but, rather, represent the feeling of cold on your skin and is expressed in temperature-like units. Exposed skin at very cold wind chills can freeze in only minutes. The best way to avoid the hazards of wind chill is to check the weather forecast before going outside and to be prepared by dressing warmly. The risk of frostbite increases rapidly when wind chill values go below -27.
Seven Steps to Cold Weather Safety
- Check the weather forecast before planning outdoor activities.
- Dress in layers with a wind resistant ourer layer, wear a hat, mittens, scarf or face mask, and insulated, waterproof footwear. When it is very cold, or when the wind chill is significant, cover as much exposed skin as possible. Your body's extremities, such as the ears, nose, fingers and toes, lose heat the fastest.
- Limit your time outdoors when it is very cold or when the wind chill is significant.
- Seek shelter - get out of the wind
- Stay dry - wet clothing chills the body rapidly.
- Keep active to stay warmer - walking or running will help warm you by generating body heat.
- Watch for signs of frostbite - numbess and white patches on skin. Some people are more susceptible to the cold - particularly children, the elderly and those with circulation problems.
|Wind Speed (km/h)||0||-5||-10||-15||-20||-25||-30||-35||-40||-45||-50|
- 0 to -9, Low risk of frostbite
- -10 to -27, Moderate Risk
- -28 to -39, High risk in 30 minutes of exposure
- -40 to -47, Very high risk in 5 to 10 minutes of exposure
- -48 to -54, Severe risk in 2 to 5 minutes of exposure
- -55 and colder, Extreme risk in 2 minutes or less exposure
Wind Chill infographic: the chilling facts
Wind Chill infographic - text version
Wind Chill: The Chilling Facts
On a calm day, our bodies insulate us from the outside temperature by warming up a thin layer of air close to our skin, known as the boundary layer.
When the wind blows, it takes the boundary layer away, exposing our skin to the outside air. It takes energy for our bodies to warm up a new layer. If each layer keeps being blown away, our skin temperature will drop and we feel colder.
Good quality clothing with high insulating properties traps air, creating a thicker boundary layer around the body which keeps in the heat.
Wind Chill fact sheet
This six-page factsheet describes Canada's Wind Chill Index. It includes information on cold weather safety, injuries caused by exposure to the cold and a chart with information on health hazards and safety advice for different wind chill values.
Cold injuries - text version
- Skin appears yellowish or white but is soft to the touch
- Painful tingling or burning sensation
What do to:
- Do not rub or massage the area
- Warm the area gradually - use body heat (a warm hand) or warm water
- Skin appears white and waxy and is hard to the touch.
- No sensation - the area is numb
What do to:
- Get medical help immediately. A frostbite can result in amputation
- Do not rub or massage the area
- Warm the area gradually - use body heat, or warm water and ensure it stays warm
- Shivering, confusion and loss of muscular control can occur
- Can progress to a life-threatening condition
What do to:
- Get medical attention immediately
- Get the person indoors and gently remove wet clothing
Weather Wise infographic - text version
Achoo! Make sure to check the weather forecast before heading out! #WeatherWise.
Image of a person not dressed appropriately for the weather.
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