Salads, towels and curtains: beat the heat!

Small salads would help people cope with hot conditions this summer, Hume Mayor, Councillor Helen Patsikatheodorou, has said.

Cr Patsikatheodorou today outlined a number of ways that residents could keep cool during a heatwave.

“We’re still in the first month of summer, and the weather has been very hot and dry,” Cr Patsikatheodorou said.

“Heatwaves can be particularly uncomfortable and temperatures in the high 30s and low 40s may dramatically affect the health of people and animals.

“We want everyone to do what they can to stay cool on those really hot days, because anyone may become very ill as a direct result of a heatwave.

“The higher temperatures can cause some people to suffer cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke, and young children and senior citizens are particularly at risk.”

People should drink two to three litres of water every day when temperatures are extreme, and try to avoid beverages with sugar, caffeine and alcohol.

Cr Patsikatheodorou said salads were a good idea for mealtimes on a hot day.

“Cool meals that include lettuce, carrots, beetroot and other vegetables can help when conditions are already very warm,” she said.

“A wet towel or face washer may assist, and a cool shower at low pressure is also very useful.

“Try to stay indoors at home, using fans or air conditioners if you have them, and shut any curtains or blinds, so that much of the heat can remain outside.

“If a cool breeze starts to blow, open your windows to cool rooms down.

“And if you prefer, visit a local shopping centre or one of Hume’s libraries, where the air conditioning is very good.”

Residents should avoid any strenuous, outdoor activity on a hot day.

If people must be outdoors when temperatures are high, Hume City Council recommends that they:

• keep to the shade as much as possible;
• drink plenty of water; and
• wear a wide-brimmed hat and clothing that fits loosely and is light-coloured.

Cr Patsikatheodorou encouraged residents to prepare for hot days before they arrive.

“Check your air conditioner to make sure it works properly, and arrange for it to be serviced if you have any concerns,” she said.

“Purchase extra food and medicines and store them at a safe temperature so that you have less need to leave a cool home during a heatwave.

“Consider whether shade cloths or external blinds could be fixed to parts of the house that face the sun, to provide a heat barrier.”

Anyone who feels unwell due to hot weather should consult their local doctor or, in an emergency, dial 000.

For further information on how to keep cool on very hot days, visit here.

Posted on 12:00 AM, 24 December 2015

Updated : 12:25 PM, 24 December 2015

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