STAY COOL: The sun is turning up the heat in the region from early next week.
STAY COOL: The sun is turning up the heat in the region from early next week.

‘Can cause death’: How to stay safe as heatwave nears

THE Bundaberg region is set for a fiery introduction to summer and the Queensland Ambulance Service has given valuable information on staying safe.

Bundaberg will kick off the summer season with temperatures as high as 34 degrees early next week and Bureau of Meteorology forecaster Livio Regano says it'll be humid, too.

It's the inland areas in the region that he says will suffer the most, with Gayndah set for a 40 degree day on Wednesday, and tops of 39 on Monday and Tuesday.

"Gayndah will be extremely hot," he said.

Mr Regano says while 34 degrees is hot for Bundaberg, the reason we don't get temperatures as high as inland areas is because of the coastal sea breeze.

Once the heat reaches a certain point, it's cooled down by the ocean breeze and the closer to the coast you are, the cooler it'll stay.

"The temperature stops climbing because the sea breeze kicks in," he said.

This is shown by areas such as Hervey Bay that will only see a top of 31 early next week.

News of the impending heatwave has led to the Queensland Ambulance Service issuing a warning on the seriousness of hot weather.

Queensland Ambulance Service Acting Director for Professional Standards Lachlan Parker said there was no room for complacency.

"Over the next couple of days we're going to see an increase in temperatures across southeast Queensland, especially coming from the west," he said.

"It's important to note that while most Queenslanders are familiar with the risks associated with heat-related illness that we made sure that we don't become complacent because heat-related illness can cause death."

Mr Parker said high risk groups were largely people over 65, babies and those with cardiovascular or respiratory issues.

People are urged to drink water, wear loose clothes, stay indoors in airconditioning, look after others and keep an eye on those living alone they're generally most at risk.

"Heat related illness can cause harm, it does cause death and we need to make sure we take preventive measures necessary to prevent that," Mr Parker said.

Mr Parker also said it was important to ensure the body cooled down overnight to help it battle severe daytime temps.

"The thing is if we can get our core temperature down every night we can overcome the heat-related illness, but if we have several days of high temperature the body is unable to reset itlself," he said.

"Staying cool at night is important to reduce core temperatures so the body has a headstart."

Mr Parker said early warning signs of heat sickness were sweating, general fatigue and muscle cramps.

Later and more severe symptoms consist of confusion and the body shutting down and no longer sweating.

Mr Parker said consequences could be "devastating" and reiterated the risk of death if heat stress isn't treated at a GP clinic or by calling triple-zero.

Mr Parker also urged people not to leave children and animals in cars as the effects of the heat were rapid and once a body becomes that hot it's hard to cool it down safely.

"Do not leave anyone in a vehicle," he said.

In the event of any possible bushfires, Mr Parker said those with respiratory issues should avoid smoke hazes and stay indoors with airconditioning if possible.



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