Take care of each other in ex­treme heat

The Advertiser - - LETTERS -

WE’RE in for a hot few days.

For some it will be an ex­cuse to head to the beach for a swim and an ice cream after work, or rea­son to stay in­side with the cur­tains drawn watch­ing TV.

But the heat­wave poses real risks to oth­ers who may have to work out­side or feel they can’t af­ford to run the air­con­di­tioner.

We know that ba­bies, small chil­dren and the el­derly are par­tic­u­larly vul­ner­a­ble when the mer­cury rises into the 40s, as it will to­day and to­mor­row.

Premier Steven Mar­shall has urged us all to stay hy­drated, avoid the sun and check on our older rel­a­tives or neigh­bours.

Pets must not be for­got­ten ei­ther. An­i­mals need ac­cess to plenty of wa­ter and shade and should never be left in the car.

The State Gov­ern­ment has is­sued a Code Red for home­less­ness ser­vices to give peo­ple liv­ing on the streets more op­tions for cool shel­ter.

Even for those of us who have a safe bed to sleep in, it will be an un­com­fort­able few nights as fore­cast­ers warn there will be no re­lief in overnight min­i­mum tem­per­a­tures hov­er­ing in the 20s for the rest of the week.

Dur­ing the day, spec­ta­tors drawn to the streets for the Tour Down Un­der must re­mem­ber to be sun smart.

Race or­gan­is­ers have al­ready cut short the first two stages of the race in an­tic­i­pa­tion of the ex­treme heat.

The scorch­ing tem­per­a­tures raise the risk of bush­fire in many parts of the state, in­clud­ing much of the coun­try­side which forms a back­drop for the cy­cling race. For­eign vis­i­tors who are not used to these con­di­tions, or the speed with which a fire can take hold, should take ex­tra care.

You may be tempted to down­play the im­pact of this weather, but heat­waves have caused more deaths in Aus­tralia since 1890 than cy­clones, bush­fires, floods, earthquakes and se­vere storms com­bined.

And the Aus­tralia In­sti­tute warns SA will face many more days each year over 35C and 40C in fu­ture. So please, take the warn­ings se­ri­ously and look after yourselves, and each other.

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