Heatwave bordering 50 Degrees Celsius hits parts of the coast

A heat wave coupled with scorching temperatures bordering the 50°C-mark has hit various parts of the coast of Namibia. Medical practitioners warn residents to take extra care during this extreme heat phase. Temperatures recorded on Monday ranged from at least 40.5°C (Swakopmund) to 46°C (Walvis Bay) and 46.5°C (Henties Bay).
“Residents should take extra care and make sure they drink enough fluids,” said Aubrey Oosthuizen, co-ordinator of the West Coast Safety Initiative (WCSI), to namib times. Even though the extreme high temperatures bordered a new record, no person had been admitted to hospital due to heat-stroke or similar conditions at the Medi Clinic Hospital in Swakopmund, said hospital manager Peter Sander.
The heat coupled with the prevailing East Wind conditions is expected to last until today (Wednesday). Oosthuizen warned that during the heat residents should stay out of the sun (especially between 10:00 and 17:00). “Those extremely prone to heat related illnesses e.g. heat cramps, heat exhaustion and heat stroke, are the young and the elderly,” he said.
People suffering from Asthma as well as heart conditions will suffer especially.
“Temperatures over the past weeks ranged from 18/19°C in the evenings going up to 25/26°C during the day. This sudden in-crease to such a high temperature is not good for the body as it needs time to acclimatise,” he added. “A body is like an engine and when it overheats it seizes.”
A heat stroke is usually coupled with throbbing headaches, nausea or vomiting, a rapid, strong pulse and in extreme cases the person may lose consciousness.
When somebody suffers from heat exhaustion they may experience muscle cramps, dizziness, excessive sweating and a rapid or weak pulse.

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