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How to Survive a Heatwave in Barcelona

How to Survive a Heatwave in Barcelona

During a heatwave in Barcelona or any other place, it’s important to take certain precautions to stay safe. Here are some tips:


1. Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water throughout the day to prevent dehydration, even if you don’t feel thirsty. Avoid excessive amounts of alcohol and caffeine, as they can contribute to dehydration. Carry water with you at all times. There are 1645 water fountains around the city from which you can drink or use to fill water bottles, or cool yourself. Use the FONTS BCN app to find water fountains around the city.


2. Seek shade or air-conditioned areas: When possible, stay indoors or find shady spots to avoid direct sunlight. If you don’t have access to air conditioning at home, consider visiting public buildings with air conditioning, such as shopping malls or libraries. Climate shelters are an option and there are over 200 in Barcelona.


3. Dress appropriately: Wear loose-fitting, lightweight clothing that allows your skin to breathe. Use a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen with a high SPF to protect yourself from the sun’s harmful rays. Use a Spanish hand fan that can be bought in any souvenir store or Basar. A loose, damp cotton cloth or scarf on the back of your neck can keep you cooler.


4. Plan outdoor activities wisely: If you need to be outside, schedule your activities during cooler parts of the day, such as early morning or late evening. Limit your exposure to the sun and take frequent breaks in shaded areas.


5. Keep your living space cool: Use fans, close curtains or blinds to block out direct sunlight, and open windows during cooler hours to ventilate your home. If available, use air conditioning or portable cooling devices.


6. Check on vulnerable individuals: Regularly check on elderly family members, neighbours, or anyone who may be more susceptible to the effects of heat. Ensure they have access to a cool environment and are staying hydrated.


7. Be mindful of pets: Provide pets with plenty of fresh water and a cool place to rest. Avoid taking them for walks during the hottest times of the day, as pavement surfaces can become extremely hot and burn their paws.


8. Call 061 if you think you or someone you are with is suffering from heat stroke.


Signs of heat exhaustion:

-headaches

-dizziness

-nausea and vomiting

-muscle weakness or cramps

-pale skin

-a sudden rise in body temperature


Signs of heat stroke:

-headaches

-nausea

-an intense thirst

-sleepiness

-hot, red and dry skin

-a sudden rise in body temperature

-confusion

-aggression

-convulsions and a loss of consciousness


While waiting for an ambulance:

-Move the person to somewhere cooler
-Increase ventilation by opening windows and using a fan
-Cool them down by loosening clothes, sprinkling them with cold water or wrapping them in a damp cloth
-If they are conscious, give them water or fruit juice to drink;
-Do not give aspirin or paracetamol.


Remember to monitor local weather updates and follow any recommendations or guidelines provided by local authorities during heat waves.

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