Heatwave health warning

    Summer skyline over Bradford Place, Walsall today (pic Stuart WIlliams)
    Summer skyline over Bradford Place, Walsall today (pic Stuart WIlliams)

With a week of hot weather on the horizon, and temperatures rocketing already today, Walsall families are being reminded by Walsall Council and the NHS how they can enjoy the sunshine while looking after their health.

A Level Two heat health warning has been issued for the West Midlands with temperatures of 30 degrees predicted over the week.

The level two warning is triggered as soon as the Met Office confirms there is a 60 per cent chance of heatwave conditions, when temperatures are high enough to have a significant effect on health on at least two consecutive days.

Councillor Rose Martin, public health and wellbeing portfolio holder: said it was important for Walsall residents to be aware of the health risks associated with heatwave temperatures.

“We want everyone to enjoy this hot spell safely in Walsall and not suffer any ill effects,” she said.

“We are reminding people of Public Health England’s key tips for staying safe and well and also asking them to be mindful of vulnerable friends or neighbours in their communities who can be affected by such high temperatures.

“So many people are getting out and about in our parks and countryside sites, or making the most of a safe swim at our leisure centres during this warm weather and it’s a lovely sight to see.

“But it’s been a while since we had such high temperatures and we want people to remember this summer for all the right reasons, not because they suffered as a result.”

The key tips to remember during such a hot spell are:

  • Try to keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm
  • If you are in the heat, walk in the shade, apply sunscreen and wear a hat
  • Avoid physical exertion
  • Wear light, loose fitting cotton clothes
  • Drink plenty of cold drinks and cool foods such as salads
  • Keep medicines below 25 °C or in the refrigerator
  • Look out for others, especially vulnerable groups such as the elderly, young children and babies and those with serious illnesses
  • Never leave anyone in a closed, parked vehicle, especially infants, young children or animals

Remember that it can get uncomfortably hot indoors too. Try to keep your bedroom and living space cool, by closing the curtains on windows that receive the sun and opening your windows at cooler times of the day and overnight when safe to do so. Turn off non-essential lights and electrical items as these generate heat.

Walsall’s health and social care workers in the community, hospitals and care homes will also regularly check on vulnerable residents who are known to them.

Residents in Walsall can find useful tips via @phwalsall or Public Health England at www.gov.uk/phe and if you have any health queries to contact NHS 111.