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Hot weather hazards follow Cyclone Marcia

Chief Health Officer Dr Jeannette Young is warning cyclone-affected Queenslanders that the clean-up following TC Marcia is fraught with health risks associated with the current hot weather conditions.

"I strongly advise Queenslanders to take precautions against heat stress in the current weather conditions," Dr Young said.

"Cyclone Marcia has significantly affected community infrastructure, so many people are stuck in extremely hot conditions without electricity or other support mechanisms.

"People need to be aware that the heat may make existing medical conditions worse and could cause heat-related illness.

"To cope with the heat when working outdoors, stay in the shade, drink plenty of water and wear a hat and light coloured, loose fitting clothing.

"Don’t go out in the hottest part of the day, and avoid strenuous activities

"Hydration is vital, and this means drinking two to three litres of water a day while avoiding drinks with high levels of sugar or caffeine and alcohol and very cold drinks.

"But don’t overdo it – too much water can be dangerous.

"If your doctor normally restricts your fluid intake, check how much it is safe to drink while it is hot. It’s recommended that your water consumption should ensure that your urine is light yellow."

Dr Young suggested that people without power should consider visiting air-conditioned facilities such as shopping centres, libraries and cinemas, where possible.

For further information, visit Staying healthy in the heat or call 13 HEALTH (13 43 25 84).

Last updated: 23 February 2015