Friday, 19 July 2013

Heatwave: don't go into meltdown


It's a scorcher! And Lancashire County Council's new public health chief is urging residents to look after themselves during the hottest summer weather for years.

Temperatures in Lancashire have been soaring into the high twenties, and the county's parks and green spaces are crowded with people enjoying the unaccustomed sun.

Azhar Ali, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: "We're more used to coping with wet and windy weather in this country, so prolonged hot weather is a welcome change for most of us – but it brings problems for some.

"Older people and those with chronic or serious illness need to take extra care and we'd ask people to keep an eye on any neighbours who they think might be at risk.

"And the Safer Sleep for Baby campaign has lots of good advice about how to make sure your little ones are comfortable and safe from overheating while they're sleeping.

"During the heatwave, we all just need to use our common sense – keeping out of the sun, staying as cool as possible, drinking lots of cold non-alcoholic fluids and looking after those who are at risk."

Top tips from Public Health England include:

-    Try to 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
-    Avoid physical exertion
-    Wear light, loose fitting cotton clothes
-    Drink plenty of cold drinks
-    If you take medication, 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.

• For more information on Safer Sleep for Baby, please visit www.lancashire.gov.uk and search 'safer sleep'. Safer Sleep for Baby is a campaign run by the Safeguarding Children Boards for Lancashire, Blackpool and Blackburn with Darwen

The Heatwave Plan for England 2013 (PDF) was published by Public Health England.

• For more information about sun safety tips from Public Health England, please visit: http://www.hpa.org.uk/Topics/Radiation/UnderstandingRadiation/AtAGlance/Flash_Sunsense/

For information about skin cancer and sun protection from Cancer Research UK, please visit: www.sunsmart.org.uk

Further sun safety advice is available from NHS Choices: www.nhs.uk

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