The UK had one of its hottest days on record on 18th July, with a high of 38.1C – and forecasters are warning it will be warmer still. The Met Office has issued a red extreme heat warning for Monday and Tuesday in much of England, with temperatures of up to 41C forecast.
The evidence about the risks to health from heatwaves is extensive and consistent from around the world. Many of these deaths will be amongst vulnerable and older people. The NHS has excellent advice how to cope in a heatwave. Our top tips will help too.
Stay out of the heat: Keep out of the sun between 11.00am and 3.00pm. If you have to go out in the heat, walk in the shade, apply sunscreen and wear a hat and light scarf. Avoid extreme physical exertion. Wear light, loose-fitting cotton clothes.
Cool yourself down: Have plenty of cold drinks, and avoid excess alcohol, caffeine and hot drinks. Eat cold foods, particularly salads and fruit with a high water content. Take a cool shower, bath or body wash. Sprinkle water over the skin or clothing, or keep a damp cloth on the back of your neck.
Keep your living space cool: Close curtains during the day. You can keep the upstairs cool by opening the hatch to the loft so that heat can rise further and escape from the house, try it, it really works! Extreme temperature sensors monitor for excess high and low temperatures and will raise an alert at our contact centre if there is cause for concern.
If you have a health problem keep medicines below 25 °C or in the refrigerator (read the storage instructions on the packaging). Seek medical advice if you are suffering from a chronic medical condition or taking multiple medications.
Check up on friends, relatives and neighbours who may be less able to look after themselves. If you have an in-home pendant alarm and feel unwell press your red button and we will assist you.