The Canary and Balearic Islands are currently on a “very high” summer heat warning
Aemet, the Spanish state’s weather agency, said temperatures in the Canary Islands are expected to be 60% warmer, while weather in the Balearic Islands is expected to be 70% hotter than normal.
The extreme heatwave will hit tourists visiting some of Spain’s most popular holiday destinations, including Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, Mallorca and Ibiza.
Local authorities in the Canary Islands have already launched a contingency heat prevention plan which is expected to last until September 15 and temperatures are expected to reach 42C this weekend.
A monitoring system to assess the impact of high temperatures on population health has been put in place, while health centers are also on high alert to deal with a potential influx of patients affected by the intense heat.
A Canary Islands health spokesman said: “These measures aim to increase individual prevention capacity to face the heat in the Canary Islands by applying simple and accessible measures.
“All hospitals and the Canary Islands Emergency Service (SUC) have designated and specially trained staff to manage and effectively coordinate the services in the event of a possible heat wave, as well as the established communication channels.”
Advice for tourists
Holidaymakers heading to the Canary or Balearic Islands this summer are advised to stay in the shade as much as possible to avoid heat exhaustion or heat stroke and to keep plenty of water.
Heat exhaustion is the precursor to heat stroke and is the body’s response to overheating, often caused by dehydration and salt loss.
It’s not a serious condition, but it can cause headaches, dizziness, and nausea. Symptoms generally improve as the body cools. Left untreated, heat exhaustion can progress to heat stroke, the most serious heat-related illness, in which the body temperature can rise to 40°C or more.
To avoid the risk of heat stroke, tourists can take the following precautions:
- Drink plenty of cold beverages, especially when exercising
- Take cool baths or showers
- Wear light-colored, loose clothing
- Spray water on skin or clothing
- Avoid the sun between 11am and 3pm
- Avoid excessive alcohol
- Avoid extreme training