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Greece takes measures to protect citizens during the heatwave

Αuthorities in Greece have taken a series of measures on Tuesday to protect members of the public from the effects of a heatwave that is expected to push temperatures in Athens and other parts of the country above 40 degrees Celsius until the end of the week.

The heatwave forecast to last until Friday, June 14, will reach its peak on Wednesday and Thursday, June 12-13, 2024, an update and reevaluation is expected on Thursday noon.

The measures include the closure of primary schools and kindergartens in areas mostly affected by the soaring temperatures, teleworking or flexible working hours for civil servants, as well as the opening of air-conditioning spaces for the public.

Civil servants with health problems and other vulnerabilities will work from home until Thursday, June 13.

The municipality of Athens is extending the opening hours of its community centers, or so-called Friendship Clubs, so that elderly and other vulnerable people can find some relief in their air-conditioned spaces.

These Friendship Clubs are located in Agios Pavlos (22 Mamouri & Dymis), Neos Kosmos (15 Heldreich), Votanikos (4 Kozanis), Kolokynthous (9 Aimonos & Astrous), Agios Eleftherios (372 Acharnon) and Kypseli (Skyrou & Kafkasou), Ampelokipi (Panormou & Vatheos).

Also other municipalities offer relief services to the society by opening A/C space or the Elderly Clubs (KAPH).

Citizens may additionally contact the 24-hour Citizen Service Line on tel <1595> or the “Heatwave line” of the Athens Municipal Clinics service (tel 210.3638049), daily from 8.30 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., to receive advice and guidance on how to deal with heat-related health problems.

Primary schools and kindergartens in several regions are closed and will open again on Friday, June 14, to protect pupils and staff from the heat.Teachers and parents complained that the majority of public schools do not have A/C.

Parents are advised to seek information about operations directly by the schools.

Labor Ministry: Workers working outdoors should avoid work between 12 noon and 5 p.m.

The Civil Protection has issued a series of guidelines on how to protect yourself and others.

Avoid sunbathing and stay in shady and cool places away from crowded places.

Avoid heavy physical work especially in places with high temperature and high humidity, and absence of breeze.

Avoid walking for a long time or running under the sun.

Prefer light, comfortable and light-colored clothes made of natural material to facilitate the ventilation of the body and the evaporation of sweat. Choose a hat that ensures good head ventilation. Wear black or dark-colored glasses with a special coating that protects against the sun’s reflection.

Make sure your diet consists of light and small meals, with an emphasis on fruits and vegetables. Limit fat consumption.

Drink plenty of fluids (water and fruit juices). If you sweat a lot, add salt to your food. Avoid alcoholic beverages.

Take lukewarm showers during the day and, if necessary, place wet covers on the head and neck.

Take care of your family members suffering from chronic diseases (respiratory, cardiovascular, etc.). Consult their treating physician for the application of special instructions and for those taking medication.

Avoid long journeys on public transport when the heat is very high.

If you have babies and children

Dress them as lightly as possible. Make sure their arms and legs are free and not wrapped in diapers.

Make sure they don’t stay in the sun after swimming in the sea and always wear a hat.

In addition to milk, other liquids are recommended. Consult your pediatrician.

For older children, make sure they drink plenty of fluids (water and fruit juices) and eat more vegetables and fruits and less fat.

If you have elderly people

Move them to cooler places or areas (coastal or mountain), because the very hot and humid environment becomes dangerous. Alternatively, make sure they stay in the lower apartments of high-rise buildings.

Open the house at night to cool and keep it tightly closed during the hot hours of the day.

Do not leave elderly family members alone during summer holidays or when you are away from home for several days. Otherwise secure a person for their daily care.

Pet owners are also advised to avoid walks during the peak hours, to make sure their animals have access to shade and plenty of water, to keep them indoors and preferably with air-conditioning when possible, and to avoid over-feeding them.

Fill bowls of fresh water for strays in your neighborhood and other areas,

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