York Council plans for “heatwave”

The York Council has issued advice on dealing with a forecast “heatwave” This is what they say;

The council is encouraging residents to think about how it may impact on their health and that of their friends and family.

The council works to the nationally operated Heatwave Plan that includes a Heat-Health Watch alert system which operates from 1 June to 15 September and is based on Met Office forecasts and data.  This system triggers levels of response from the NHS, government and public health systems and communicate risks.    

The Heat-Health Watch system comprises five main levels (0-4) ranging from year round planning for warm weather to the declaration of a major incident due to a prolonged heatwave being experienced.  

The Heatwave Alert system is based on temperature thresholds where there is a 15-20% increased risk of a heatwave being declared.  For York the trigger criteria for declaring a heatwave are 29/15/29C (Day/Night/Day).   

City of York Council’s Acting Director of Public Health Julie Hotchkiss said: “Many of us enjoy the hot weather, but high temperatures can be dangerous especially for those who may be particularly vulnerable including older people, young children and people who have long term conditions.  Some closed spaces, particularly cars, can get very hot indeed and we should be aware of this and reduce time spent in these spaces.”    

Top advice for being sun safe:
• keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm

• avoid extreme physical exertion

• wear light, loose-fitting cotton clothes

• drink plenty of cold drinks and avoid excess alcohol, caffeine or hot drinks

• take a cool shower, bath or body wash

• keep your living space cool is especially important for infants, the elderly or those with chronic health conditions

• close curtains that receive morning or afternoon sun

• apply sunscreen of at least SPF15 with UVA protection when going outside

• look out for others especially vulnerable groups such as older people, young children and babies and those with serious illnesses.

Julie Hotchkiss continues: “Susceptibility to high temperatures varies; those who are overweight or who are taking medication may be at increased risk of adverse effects.  People with behavioural problems and/or dementia may not be aware of the risk, and may not act to get themselves in a cooler situation.  It is very important that these people drink plenty of fluids.”    

For more information please visit www.gov.uk and search for heatwave”.

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