Britons should ‘enjoy the sunshine,’ says Dominic Raab amid warnings people will die due to extreme heat

The deputy prime minister urged Britons to take ‘common sense’ precautions as temperatures increase

Joe Middleton
Sunday 17 July 2022 17:00 BST
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Britons should “enjoy the sunshine” during the heatwave, Dominic Raab has said, despite warnings the extreme temperatures could cause thousands of deaths.

The deputy prime minister said people should be “resilient” as temperatures are set to skyrocket to 40C on Monday and Tuesday.

“Obviously there is some common sense practical advice we are talking about – stay hydrated, stay out of the sun at the hottest times, wear sun cream – those sorts of things,” he told Sky News’ Sophy Ridge On Sunday programme.

“We ought to enjoy the sunshine and actually we ought to be resilient enough through some of the pressures it will place.”

The Met Office has issued its first ever red alert for extreme heat in the UK on Monday and Tuesday, with forecasters saying temperatures are likely to exceed 40C.

The chief executive of the College of Paramedics warned on Sunday that the “ferocious heat” could result in people dying.

Tracy Nicholls told Ms Ridge: “This isn’t like a lovely hot day where we can put a bit of sunscreen on, go out and enjoy a swim and a meal outside.

“This is serious heat that could actually, ultimately, end in people’s deaths because it is so ferocious. We’re just not set up for that sort of heat in this country.”

Some experts have estimated the heatwave could cause up to 2,000 excess deaths.

Raab said people should be “resilient enough” to deal with the heatwave

The government and transport companies have advised people to work from home if possible as the heat is expected to cause major disruption to trains.

Asked if people should consider staying at home, Mr Raab said: “That is for employers to consider and people to decide.

“I’m not going to start dictating things like that. But obviously we have got more flexible working. So that will also help with this kind of thing.”

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