Heat Health Alert for Kent

9 July 2010, 06:21 | Updated: 9 July 2010, 16:27

We've got the first 'heat-health alert' of the summer because temperatures in Kent could reach 31 Celsius over the next few days.

But it's not the hot sunshine during the day that people need to be wary of, but night-time temperatures of at least 20C (68F) in some parts which pose the most threat.

Head of health forecasting at the Met Office Wayne Elliott said: "While there is the possibility of daytime temperatures reaching trigger thresholds, it is the night time values which are of real concern. High humidity and the lack of any breeze could make matters worse for people with underlying health problems.''

Chief forecaster at the Met Office Frank Saunders added: "There is a 60% chance of some places in East Anglia and south east England reaching 32C but it is important to note that it won't be hot everywhere. Cloud and some rain are expected for a time over northern regions of the UK.''

The elderly and babies and young children are the most at risk during hot weather spells, so should be regularly checked to make sure they are not suffering.

NHS West Kent and NHS Eastern and Coastal Kent have issued this advice:

  • Stay in the shade where possible, especially between 11am and 3pm
  • Check up on friends, relatives and neighbours, especially the elderly, who may be less able to look after themselves
  • Drink cold drinks like water or fruit juice regularly and avoid tea, coffee and alcohol, as they make dehydration worse
  • Identify the coolest room in the house to use as a room to cool down or sleep in
  •     Shut and shade windows when it is hotter outside and open them for ventilation when it is cooler outside
  •     Avoid doing things that need lots of effort like sport, DIY or gardening
  •     People with serious health problems (for example heart conditions), should avoid going out in the heat,  especially between 11am and 3pm

The highest temperature reached so far this year was 30.9C (87.6F) in Gravesend, on June 27.

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