Take cold showers, avoid BBQs and don’t go wild swimming: Tips from Yorkshire organisations on coping in extreme temperatures

Due to the persistent heatwave experienced by many areas in Yorkshire and the Humber, the Met Office has issued a Heat-Health Alert for the region.

Darren Haley, a member of WYFRS. (Pic credit: Jonathan Gawthorpe)

High temperatures between 23C and 27C are expected to last across Yorkshire until Friday this week (July 23) and while hot weather has its benefits, organisations in the region have also highlighted potential dangers and are offering tips on how to cope in the heat.

West Yorkshire Prepared has compiled a list of tips on coping with the heat to not just make the most of your summer, but more importantly keep yourself and others safe.

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“Although many people will be enjoying the high temperatures we’ve been experiencing, there are many hazards we all need to be aware of and be prepared to respond to, to ensure we all continue to enjoy the sun safely,” said Dave Walton, co-chair of West Yorkshire Prepared.

“From heat exhaustion and severe sunburn to water incidents and wildfires, there can unfortunately be a number of dangerous outcomes from extreme temperatures if people aren’t properly prepared.”

“First and foremost, try not to get too hot in the first place. Aim to keep out of the sun between 11am and 3pm, but if you do need to go out, apply sunscreen, walk in the shade where possible and wear a hat and light, loose-fitting clothes.

“You should also avoid strenuous outdoor activity. There are many ways to keep cool: have plenty of cold drinks and avoid excess alcohol and caffeine. 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 keep a damp cloth on the back of your neck. Keep rooms cool by using shades or reflective material outside the windows. If this is not possible, use light-coloured curtains and keep them closed.”

The West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) and the Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust have urged the public to avoid jumping into canals and rivers due to their potential dangers.

Group manager of WYFRS, Andy Rose, said: “Unfortunately, during periods of warm weather we tend to see more water rescues as people enter canals and rivers to cool down and swim.

“As appealing as this may seem there are many hidden dangers that have tragically taken lives and I would urge members of the public not to enter the water due to the potential unseen hazards and risks.”

There has also been an increase in wildfires during periods of prolonged hot weather due to the ground being very dry. The public are warned not to set up BBQs in unauthorised areas.

“We do tend to see an increase in fires in the countryside whenever the weather picks up. Wildfires can spread very quickly, threatening the safety of people, animals and property.

“We would ask people to be vigilant, responsible and please do think of the consequences of your actions,” Dale Gardiner, wildfire lead officer for WYFRS, said.

If you have any concerns about a heat-related condition, visit www.nhs.uk/conditions for advice, visit your local pharmacy, contact your GP or use the NHS 111 service. Only call 999 for life-threatening emergencies.