In summer, Tairāwhiti occasionally experiences extremely hot days. There are steps you can take to help you and your whānau stay well during periods of hot weather.
There are groups of people more at risk of experiencing heat-related health problems during periods of hot weather. These groups include:
- Older people, people with chronic medical conditions, and people who are obese or overweight;
- People who live alone, or people who are socially isolated or reliant upon others;
- Children, especially babies and young children.
There are some simple and easy steps you can take to ensure you and others are staying healthy in the heat.
Drink plenty of water and stay hydrated
- If you are going out, take some water with you and always keep a bottle of water in the car
- Avoid/limit alcohol
- Wear light-coloured, loose-fitting clothing made of natural fibres, such as cotton
- Plan your day to avoid going out during the hottest part of the day
- Take regular breaks in the shade when outdoors
- Place a damp cloth/scarf/handkerchief on the back of your neck, and re-wet as needed
- Park your car in a shady spot and never leave children or pets in a car unattended
- Wear a hat, sunglasses and carry an umbrella to use as a sunshade
- Splash or spray some water on arms and feet to cool off
- Have cool showers or baths
- Move to the coolest room in the house
- Take a dip at the beach or swimming pools to cool off
- Avoid strenuous outdoor activity or exercise. Try and plan activity for early morning or in the evening.
Keep your house cool
- If the inside temperature is cooler than outside, keep windows closed and blinds down
- Open the windows once the temperature outside is cooler mostly during the evening, night and early morning
- Use a fan or air-conditioning unit where possible.
Take care of each other
- Keep an eye out on your neighbours and check if they are ok
- Older & vulnerable who live alone may need a daily check to ensure they are well
- Remember that pets and animals can also suffer from the heat – keep them in the shade and provide them with plenty of water.