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Vital advice on staying cool and safe in hot weather has been issued to Islanders as temperatures of 30c or more are expected across the Isle of Wight this week.

As the kids break up from school and the summer holidays get well underway, the Island is expected to see another prolonged spell of hot weather between now and Friday – that’s according to local forecasters IW Met Service.

The mercury is expected to hit 31c in places on Thursday before cooling slightly again on Friday. However, looking towards next week the heatwave is set to continue with the potential of even higher temperatures at the beginning of August.

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Whilst many will be rejoicing at the news of Mediterranean-like conditions, gardeners and farmers will be anxious to hear that the drought is set to continue.

Dr Barbara Stuttle CBE, Director of Nursing, Midwifery, Allied Health Professionals & Community Services at Isle of Wight NHS Trust says:

“Hot weather can be dangerous for those with pre-existing conditions, especially serious chronic conditions. Ensure that you drink lots of water and stay out of the sun, preferably somewhere cool, if you can. If you have to go out in the sun make sure you cover-up – hats, loose fitting clothes and sun tan cream.

“We would urge everyone to ensure that they follow our top tips for staying cool and safe during this heatwave.”

Top tips for keeping cool and safe are:

• Shut windows and pull down the shades when it is hotter outside. You can open the windows for ventilation when it is cooler
• Avoid the heat: stay out of the sun and don’t go out between 11:00 and 15:00 (the hottest part of the day) if you’re vulnerable to the effects of heat
• Keep rooms cool by using shades or reflective material outside the windows. If this isn’t possible, use light-coloured curtains and keep them closed (metallic blinds and dark curtains can make the room hotter)
• Have cool baths or showers, and splash yourself with cool water
• Drink cold drinks regularly, such as water and diluted fruit juice. Avoid excess alcohol, caffeine (tea, coffee and cola) or drinks high in sugar
• Plan ahead to make sure you have enough supplies, such as food, water and any medications you need
• Identify the coolest room in the house so you know where to go to keep cool
• Wear loose, cool clothing, and a hat and sunglasses if you go outdoors
• Check up on friends, relatives and neighbours who may be less able to look after themselves

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The main risks posed by a heatwave are:

dehydration (not having enough water)
• overheating, which can make symptoms worse for people who already have problems with their heart or breathing
• heat exhaustion and heatstroke

A heatwave can affect anyone, but the most vulnerable people are:

• older people, especially those over 75
• babies and young children
• people with a serious chronic condition, especially heart or breathing problems
• people with mobility problems – for example, people with Parkinson’s disease or who have had a stroke
• people with serious mental health problems
• people on certain medications, including those that affect sweating and temperature control
• people who misuse alcohol or drugs
• people who are physically active – for example, labourers or those doing sports

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