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Heat wave warning

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The South African Weather Services issued an alert for extreme temperatures across Gauteng and other parts of the country on Thursday.

"In order for the current temperatures to be considered as a heat wave they have to be at least five degrees higher than expected temperatures for this time of year, and they have to last for more than three days", said forecaster Puseletso Mofokeng. (News24)

What should you do during a heat wave?

• Do not leave children or pets alone in enclosed vehicles or confined areas.
• Ensure that you stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water, even if you do not feel thirsty.
• Try to eat small meals and eat more often.
• Try and postpone outdoor activities.
• If you work outdoors, ensure that you take care of yourself by moving out of the sun into the shade more often than usual, and stay hydrated.
• Do not take part in strenuous outdoor activities without a second person present to relieve you or call for help should something happen.
• Ensure that you keep an eye out for elderly people that stay alone or are not able to move around easily as they might need assistance.

What are the caution signs?

Numerous signs and symptoms may transpire during heat exhaustion. Some of them include:

• Dizziness
• Vomiting
• Muscle cramps
• Headaches
• Flushed skin
• Excessive sweating

How can you help?

• Remove the person from the area and call for assistance
• Try and cool the person down gradually with a wet cloth or something similar
• Remove any tight multilayer clothing
• If the person is unconscious, turn them on their side
• If the person has NO altered level of consciousness, give them small amounts of water to drink

Call for assistance. ER24 084 124

Sources: ER24 Emergency Services; Redcross; News24; South African Weather Service

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