South Yorkshire health chiefs issue safety advice during heatwave

The hot weather has prompted health warnings
The hot weather has prompted health warnings

Health chiefs have issued safety advice to avoid burning and ill health during this week’s heatwave in South Yorkshire.

Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust bosses said the service normally sees an increase in ailments brought on by the warmer weather, including breathing difficulties, fainting and unconsciousness.

Dr David Macklin, Executive Director of Operations at the Trust and an A&E Doctor, said: “When temperatures rise, we tend to see an increase in calls for ambulance assistance.

“With a heatwave forecast for the rest of this week I would like to offer a few words of advice which may help prevent people in Yorkshire becoming victims of the sunshine.

“Remember, some people are more at risk from the heat than others - for example, older people, babies and young children, and people with any pre-existing medical problems that can affect their breathing.

“Try to keep as cool as possible - wear a hat when sitting or working outside and use plenty of sun cream.

“If possible, avoid going out in the hottest part of the day - between 11am and 3pm - and if you have to go out, try to stay in the shade.

“Drink plenty of water and avoid drinking alcohol in the sun.

“We know that this advice is common sense but, by reminding everyone, we hope it will help reduce the number of people who suffer any ill-effects from the hot weather.

“Our staff will be working hard to get to patients who require an emergency medical response as quickly as possible but ask that people only call 999 for an ambulance in a medical emergency when it is obvious that someone has a serious or life-threatening illness or injury.”

The Trust is also urging people to take extra care in and around open water during the hot spell.

Dr Macklin added: “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