THE Welsh Ambulance Service is urging the public to take precautions during the hot weather expected this week.

Warm weather generates an increase in calls to people with breathing difficulties, and with 999 demand already high, and Covid-19 infections continuing to rise, the Trust is asking the public to take extra precautions to reduce pressure on the service.

Lee Brooks, the Trust’s Executive Director of Operations, said: “We had almost 2,000 calls to 999 on Sunday alone, which is roughly one call every minute.

“We expect demand to remain high with the increase in temperature, so we need the public’s help to ensure that the pressures we face are not exacerbated by the weather.

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“Hot weather means your body has to work harder to keep its core temperature to normal levels, and this puts extra strain on your heart, lungs and kidneys.

“This means that you can be at greater risk if you have a pre-existing heart or respiratory condition, like asthma or angina.

“It’s really important to keep cool and stay hydrated, and if you’re out and about, please look after yourself and those with you.

“If you do fall victim to the sun, take one of our NHS 111 Wales symptom checkers for bites and stings, breathing difficulties, hay fever and sunburn – it’ll help you determine the best course of action.”

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Protecting yourself in the heat

  • Drink lots of water – it’s important to keep hydrated as you lose more fluid than you take in during hotter temperatures and this is especially true if drinking alcohol
  • Keep out of the sun – it’s best to stay in the shade between 11am-3pm when the sun is at its hottest
  • Wear sun cream and sunglasses – apply a sun cream of at least factor 30 that includes UVA protection and make sure your sunglasses have UV protection lenses
  • Loose clothing – wear light, loose fitting cotton clothes along with a hat
  • Look out for others – keep a check on those vulnerable to the effects of heat, especially the elderly, young children and babies and those who have a heart or respiratory condition such as asthma
  • Never leave babies, young children or animals in a parked vehicle – temperatures can soar very quickly in a parked car, and children under two are particularly at risk of getting heatstroke or heat exhaustion
  • Take care around water – always supervise children in and around pools and seriously consider whether open water areas (rivers, lakes, etc.) are safe