POLL: Do you feel safe visiting beaches in 36C Britain today despite coronavirus? VOTE
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Yesterday was the hottest August day on record since the deadly heatwave in 2003 which saw up to 20,000 people die across Europe. And weekend temperatures are expected to be just at hot in some regions of the country.
Despite social distancing measures still in place amid the coronavirus pandemic, thousands of people will descend upon beaches across the country.
Not only have worries been raised about social distancing, but Public Health England has warned NHS staff to be ready to deal with heat-related illnesses.
Now the Express.co.uk is asking, ‘Do you feel safe visiting beaches in 36C Britain today despite coronavirus?’
Earlier this year Bournemouth beach had to declare a national emergency after thousands of people flocked to the coast as lockdown measures were gradually being eased.
And, some beachgoers even cut their trips short this weekend claiming too many people were not observing social distancing measures.
One woman told Sky News: “We did arrive early enough so that we would get a decent space for ourselves.
“But, as you can see how busy it is, we’re now having to cut the day short and leave early.
“People just aren’t following rules, they’re just coming on top of you. It’s just too busy”.
PHE issued a level three warning ahead of the record-breaking heatwave yesterday urging people to look out for others.
They said: “Fear of COVID-19 should not prevent action to tackle the risks from hot weather and heatwaves.
“Look out for others, especially older people, young children and babies and those with underlying health conditions.
“Close curtains on rooms that face the sun to keep indoor spaces cooler and remember it may be cooler outdoors than indoors.
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“Drink plenty of fluids and avoid excess alcohol, dress appropriately for the weather and slow down when it is hot.”
As hundreds of people arrive at beauty spots and beaches, others have abandoned plans as people ignore vital rules.
According to reports, the car park at Camber Sands in East Sussex was shut by 10am while some beachgoers slept in tents overnight on Bournemouth beach to beat the rush.
Police bosses warned any events with more than 30 people will not be allowed to go ahead.
They said: “Any event of more than 30 people, without agreement from the police and the local authority, will not be allowed to go ahead.
“Rother District Council and Sussex Police will be monitoring arrivals at the beach and will disperse or turn away any large groups or gatherings.
“Anyone who has bought a ticket for an event at Camber should contact the event organisers and ask for a refund.”
Devon and Cornwall’s Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez said the region is braced for an exceptionally busy weekend.
She said: “Roads, beauty spots and town centres are likely to be exceptionally busy this weekend and we are asking visitors to allow for extra time for their journeys, pack extra suncream and be cautious with their alcohol consumption.
“I particularly want residents and visitors to take extra care around the coast.”
The heatwave is expected to continue throughout the weekend but will only be short-lived as thunderstorms are expected.
Dan Harris, Met Office deputy chief meteorologist, said: “We’ve issued a broad thunderstorm warning for Monday and Tuesday for all parts of the UK, since although the ingredients are there, it’s just too early to pinpoint the details of exactly where and when thunderstorms will occur.
“As such, we will be monitoring the developing signals closely and I urge people to keep a close eye on Met Office warnings and forecasts over the coming days.”
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