Heatwave warning No. 2 for Fareham and Gosport but use water wisely

By Chief Correspondent Rob Thomas

JUST as one Met Office heatwave warning came to an end yesterday it issued another warning of hot weather for Fareham and Gosport tomorrow – Sunday – July 17 – and early next week.

At the same time, Portsmouth Water – which supplies water to the two boroughs – is asking people to “use water wisely”.

Fareham is forecast to experience temperatures of 26 degrees Celsius on Sunday, rising to 29 degrees on Monday and Tuesday while Gosport’s more coastal location will see temperatures of 24 degrees on Sunday and 25 degrees on both of the following two days.

These temperatures constitute an Amber extreme heat warning – like the one reported in The Globe for earlier this week – because the high temperatures could cause serious illness, increased risks of water safety incidents as people head to the coast, rivers and lakes to try to keep cool, and possible delays due to road closures as well as delays and cancellations to train services and flights.

Anyone travelling north to Oxford and beyond or north east to London will move into a Red extreme heat warning area that extends into the Midlands and the North.

‘Please do take care in the sun’

Both  Hampshire County Council and the NHS Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Board – which has replaced the Clinical Commissioning Group – have issued advice for coping with the heat.

The county council advises that as the temperature rises:

  • stay out of the sun between 11am and 3pm
  • apply sunscreen, wear loose, lightweight cotton clothing, a hat, and sunglasses
  • have plenty of cold drinks – avoid alcohol, caffeine and hot drinks
  • avoid physical exertion including DIY or gardening as well as sport and exercise, but if it can’t be avoided try to keep to doing more vigorous exertion in the early morning or evening when it is cooler
  • children should not take part in vigorous physical activity on very hot days, such as when temperatures are above 30°C.

There is also advice on how to keep cool indoors:

  • keep your bedroom and living space cool by closing the curtains on windows that receive the sun and opening your windows at cooler times of the day – in the early morning and overnight
  • turn off non-essential lights and electrical items as these generate heat
  • electric fans may provide some relief if temperatures are below 35 degrees C (but do not aim them directly at the body)
  • seek medical advice if you have a chronic long-term condition or are taking multiple medications and become unwell due to the heat
  • keep medications that require storing below 25 degrees C in the fridge
  • follow storage instructions on packaging

GP Dr Matt Nisbet – a board member of the NHS Hampshire and Isle of Wight ICB – added: “Local health and care services are under extreme pressure and we are incredibly grateful to everyone working across the local health and care system to ensure patients continue to receive safe, high-quality care.

“There are some steps our communities can take to help us help them. The NHS is here for you, but please think carefully before dialling 999 or attending an Emergency Department. If you need urgent care but it is not a life-threatening emergency please contact NHS 111 who will support you to get the care you need. You can also speak to your GP or pharmacist or visit an Urgent Treatment Centre for illness and injuries that are urgent but not life threatening.

“Please do take care in the sun any if you have vulnerable family members, friends and/or neighbours, please do ensure they are aware of how they can keep themselves protected from the hot weather.”

Local water company asks people to ‘use water wisely’

Drinking plenty of water to avoid dehydration in the expected hot conditions is advised and in issuing its statement about the water supply situation, Portsmouth Water does not ask people to stop drinking.

Rather the request – which includes the word ‘please’ – is about taking shorter showers and not watering lawns.

Despite the recent dry weather – the last 7 months have been the 5th driest on record (since 1891) leaving groundwater levels 3 meters below the long-term average – the company’s Chief Executive Officer Bob Taylor said there is still water available in its boreholes and key reservoirs.

But he added: “The problem we can face in the short-term when there is a period of prolonged extreme hot weather is demand from customers can increase to such a level that at times people are using water at a faster rate than we can pump it from our sources to customers’ taps.

“This is where our customers can play a crucial part in ensuring there is water available for everyone by using water wisely.”

And there are more tips on how to save water HERE.

Photograph (top): drink water to avoid dehydration but otherwise ‘use water wisely’