Europe heatwave: Tourists warned to take care as temperatures set to soar

Italy, Spain and France set to experience 40-degree heat

Helen Coffey
Thursday 27 June 2019 11:53
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‘Dangerous heatwave’ to sweep Europe bringing temperatures up to 40C, forecasters say

Tourists are warned to take care as much of Europe gears up for temperatures of 40C+ degrees.

Italy, Spain and France are among the countries experiencing a sizzling heatwave this week, with temperatures in Germany, Switzerland and Hungary also tipped to hit the mid-30s.

France announced 50 schools just south of Paris would be closed today, while Italy’s Ministry of Health has put 16 cities on “red alert”, including Rome, Florence and Venice.

In parts of northeastern Spain, temperatures are expected to climb to a scorching 45C degrees on Friday – a Spanish weather forecaster tweeted a colour-coded map of Spain with the caption: “Hell is coming.”

Although over 75s, pregnant women and children under three, as well as those with pre-existing health conditions, are particularly vulnerable during a heatwave, even those who don’t fall into these brackets are at risk of dehydration, sunstroke, sunburn and exhaustion.

British tourists are being advised to take extra precautions if travelling to the countries affected.

An Abta spokesperson told The Independent: “We would advise any tourists setting off to destinations in Europe this week, where they will experience very high temperatures, to avoid spending time in the sun during the hottest part of the day.

“They should also drink plenty of water, at least two litres a day, and apply plenty of high factor sun cream.

“When holidaymakers head for the beach they should go early and when it’s midday, they should seek out some shade just as the locals do.

“The reason local people do this is because they know how powerful the sun is at the hottest part of the day and they do everything they can to avoid it.

“If you have small children remember they are even more susceptible to the sun, so make sure they are covered up with plenty of high factor sun cream or in the shade.”

The French government has also issued a public health notice advising tourists and locals to drink plenty of water, avoid drinking alcohol, avoid strenuous activity, make sure they eat enough and use fans or water sprays to stay cool.

It also warns of the signs of ill-health to watch out for: cramps; unusual tiredness; headaches; dizziness; nausea; talking incoherently; and a fever of more than 38C degrees. Anyone experiencing these symptoms is advised to dial 15.

In Italy, the Ministry of Health has issued its maximum “red alert” warning for Rome, Florence, Perugia, Bolzano, Brescia and Rieti on Thursday 27 June.

On Friday 28 June, the warning extends to Milan, Turin, Venice, Bologna, Naples, Bari, Verona, Frosinone, Latina and Viterbo.

Visitors and residents are advised not to call the emergency services unless absolutely necessary to reduce pressure on hospitals; the Italian Red Cross has set up a free 24-hour hotline offering advice on +39800 065 510.

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