Heatwave warnings issued

Heatwave warnings issued

Published at 12:02pm 30th June 2015. (Updated at 2:38pm 30th June 2015)

As temperatures soar, health experts are urging vulnerable people to keep themselves cool.

The Met Office is predicting that it could reach 35C over the next few days.

Office managers are also being asked to consider getting rid of their dress codes during the hot weather.

The Chartered Management Institute says productivity can drop during high temperatures.

Dr Lincoln Sargeant, Director of Public Health for North Yorkshire, has this advice:

There is also a reminder about the dangers of swimming in open water.

Even during warm weather, water temperatures are dangerously low and they can cause loss of strength, muscle coordination and even hypothermia.

Dr David Macklin, Executive Director of Operations at Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust and an A&E doctor, said: "The region's many waterways are popular places for people during the summer months, which can make them dangerous places for those who take risks.

"Ambulance service call-outs to open water rescues tend to go up during the summer as people attempt to cool off and then get into difficulty.

"It may be very appealing to jump into the water to cool off on a warm summer's day, but people need to be aware of how dangerous it really is.

"Water can look calm on the surface, but contain unseen debris and, rivers in particular, can have treacherous undercurrents.

"In addition, the temperature of deep water is much colder than people would expect it to be and, even on a hot summer's day, rarely gets above freezing.

"Every year, lives are tragically lost across the UK and we don't want to see anyone hurt or injured, so the message is simple; enjoy the summer, stay out of open water and stay safe!"

Meanwhile, firefighters are warning everyone to take extra care with barbecues.

On Sunday, West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service dealt with a blaze which started in a garden shed after a barbecue was packed away before it had fully extinguished.

The fire also ignited trees and the fence and spread to a shed in another garden before threatening to engulf the garage of a third property.

Watch Commander Andrew Greenwood said: "Both sheds were totally gutted. They were very lucky that it did not get into the next door's garage as well.

"This incident shows how vital it is to ensure that your barbecue is completely out before putting it away.

"A mini-heatwave has been forecast this week and people will no doubt be eager to get out in the sunshine and enjoy themselves.

"However, it's so important to think about where to site your barbecue safely, away from anything that could catch light and also be mindful of our other top tips."

Safety tips:

  • Enjoy yourself, but don't drink too much alcohol if you are in charge of the barbecue or any cooking.
  • Keep a bucket of water, sand or a garden hose nearby for emergencies.
  • Follow the safety instructions provided with disposable barbecues.
  • Never use petrol or paraffin to start or revive your barbecue; use only recognised lighters.
  • Never leave a barbecue or any cooking unattended.
  • Make sure your barbecue is well away from sheds, fences, trees, shrubs or garden waste.
  • Empty ashes onto bare garden soil, not into dustbins or wheelie bins. If they're hot, they can melt the plastic and start a fire.
  • If you intend to go camping this weekend, it is crucial that you never take a barbecue into a confined space.

Ian Bitcon, Area Manager for Fire Safety, said: "It is not uncommon for people to take a barbecue into a tent or caravan to keep warm at night.

"This is incredibly dangerous, as carbon monoxide can build up and poison you whilst you sleep.

"It is odourless, tasteless and deadly."

Public Health England has produced this video to warn of the dangers: