Region is braced for heatwave as people warned to take care

Another heatwave will hit the West Midlands which will last longer than the one that smashed temperature records earlier this summer – but will be less severe.

Jo Round is keeping the plants cool and watered at the Hollybush Garden Centre
Jo Round is keeping the plants cool and watered at the Hollybush Garden Centre

The Met Office has predicted soaring temperatures through until Friday, with sustained temperatures in the high 20s or even low 30s expected across the board.

And they, alongside health chiefs, have issued a level three heat alert due to elderly people, those with health conditions, babies and young children being put at risk.

Much of the region will begin heating up this afternoon with temperatures due to hit around 26C (78.8F) across the Black Country along with parts of Staffordshire.

It will subside overnight before hitting 27C (80.6F) on Wednesday and peaks of 29C (84.2F) on Thursday, before potentially hitting 30C (86) or above on Friday.

Met Office meteorologist Tom Morgan said the West Midlands and West Country could see the highest temperatures, with a maximum of around 35C predicted, but added this was still uncertain.

He added: "The heatwave we saw at the end of July, that was relatively short-lived and saw exceptionally high, record-breakingly high temperatures.

“We’re quite confident temperatures will not go as high as they did during July, but the difference is that this is going to be quite a prolonged period of temperatures in the low 30s, so it will be very notable nonetheless.

“Heatwave criteria are likely to be met across many parts of the UK and there will no doubt be some adverse impacts from heatwave exhaustion, dehydration and so on, so we do anticipate some potentially adverse effects to the NHS and more vulnerable people having heat-related problems through this period of time.”

Meanwhile health bosses in the Black Country have warned of temperatures rising to "extreme levels" and have urged people to stay as hydrated as possible over the next few days.

Dr Ananta Dave, chief medical officer for the NHS Black Country Integrated Care Board, said: "Temperatures are currently at extreme levels across the Black Country, so we’re advising everyone to take all the necessary precautions.

"Avoid going out into the sun during the hottest times of the day, between 11am and 3pm, and keep your home as cool as possible. Shading windows and shutting them during the day may help and reopen them when it is cooler at night. If you do venture outside, make sure you wear a hat, apply plenty of sunscreen and stay in the shade.

"Stay as hydrated as possible and take water with you if you are travelling. Try to avoid drinking alcohol as you can get dehydrated much faster than you think. Wearing light and loose-fitting cotton clothes and having cool baths or showers will also help you keep cool in the heat."

health leaders in Staffordshire echoed the calls but warned people not to be tempted to cool off in the county's reservoirs or lakes, or light fires or barbecues in the countryside

Councillor Victoria Wilson, cabinet member for communities and culture at Staffordshire County Council, said: "In the UK we are not blessed with the warmest of temperatures, so most of us really like to make the most of any warm spells while we can.

"With schools closed for the summer, many families will undoubtedly be out and about enjoying the fantastic Staffordshire countryside in the glorious weather.

“However, there are two areas which can quickly turn to tragedy in the hotter weather. The first is the very real dangers of cooling off by swimming unsupervised in open water, where even the most experienced swimmers can quickly get into life-threatening difficulties.

"Secondly setting fires in the countryside can soon see them getting out of control, causing risk to lives and devastation to the land and the wildlife there.

"So please, do enjoy the hot spell and our amazing county, but please don’t put yourself, your family or friends at risk."

Meanwhile Sandwell Council chiefs have urged residents that barbecues and portable cookers are not allowed in parks and open spaces in the borough.

It comes after a small fire at Dartmouth Park on August 4, with people also being urged to take rubbish home with them to prevent it being a fire hazard.

South Staffordshire Water said there was no plans to introduce hosepipe bans and said they will continue to monitor water resources – as they urged customers to use water wisely amid hot weather and less-than-average rainfall.

It comes less than a month after a heatwave that saw two days of sweltering heat across the UK, including a new record temperature for the country recorded in the East Midlands. The Met Office verified the new UK temperature record of 40.3C at Coningsby, Lincolnshire, seen on July 19 during the heatwave.

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