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Steps to stay healthy during the heatwave

Residents are urged to prepare for exceptionally warm temperatures as a heatwave sweeps through Cobram and district.

January 15, 2014 4:20am

Residents are urged to prepare for exceptionally warm temperatures as a heatwave sweeps through Cobram and district this week.

The Bureau of Meteorology has forecast potential heatwave conditions with temperatures climbing above 40°C for today, tomorrow and Friday.

The Department of Health has issued a ‘heat health alert’ for this week, and Moira Shire Council wants residents to take care and precautions to beat the heat.

In times of extreme temperatures there are six simple steps people can take to stay healthy:

Keep out of the heat — look for shade and wear a hat;

Drink plenty of water;

Close windows/blinds in daytime to naturally cool your home;

Talk to your health service if you have a health issue;

Check on family, friends and neighbours who may struggle in the heat; and

Help people who are feeling unwell.

Moira Shire Council acting director community Bruce Connolly said those most at risk of heat-related illness were older people, particularly those living alone without airconditioning; infants; the overweight or obese; pregnant and nursing mothers; and people with a chronic illness, conditions that impair sweating, limited or poor mobility or taking medications that may interfere with the body’s ability to regulate temperature.

Mr Connolly said people needed to ensure their airconditioners were in good working order, they drank plenty of water and had an alternative place to go if their home was not adequately prepared to cope with the heatwave conditions.

‘‘It’s important people are prepared, have a plan and do what’s necessary to make it through a heatwave and until cooler conditions arrive. Consider going to a neighbour or relative’s place if you need somewhere better equipped,’’ he said.

‘‘Residents are asked to keep in touch with friends and family that are particularly vulnerable during this period of extreme heat.’’

Mr Connolly said residents were also reminded to remain aware of the increased threat of fire during extreme heat periods.

Anyone feeling unwell during the hot weather can phone Nurse on Call on 1300606024 or in an emergency phone an ambulance on 000.

For more information about staying healthy in the heat visit the Department of Health website at www.health.vic.gov.au/environment/heatwaves

For more information about total fire bans and ratings visit http://www.cfa.vic.gov.au/warnings-restrictions/total-fire-bans-and-ratings/

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