March 24th, 2019

Heat and humidity to continue until Tuesday

A 60 year old woman from Larnaca was yesterday in serious condition after being taken to hospital in a coma, suffering from heat stroke.

According to Anna Gregoriou, a doctor at Larnaca General Hospital, the 60-year-old was brought in by ambulance with a high fever and in a comatose condition. She was immediately placed in intensive care and put on a respirator."She was living at home alone and she had air conditioning, but didn't use it," said Gregoriou. "We cannot be sure if she was drinking enough water."

Keeping cool and hydrated is imperative during these exceptionally hot days, said doctor.

Gregoriou said 18 people had been admitted to hospital since the heatwave started two weeks ago, resulting in one pensioner's death.

Exceptionally high humidity levels yesterday came to add to the insufferable heat, making it near unbearable to be outdoors before 6pm.

According to the Meteorological Services, even though temperatures didn't top 40 degrees Celsius inland and 30 degrees in the mountains, the humidity reached dangerously high levels, making life hard for people with respiratory problems.

By 6am yesterday morning, humidity levels reached a staggering 86 per cent in Nicosia, 88 per cent in Larnaca, 90 per cent in Limassol, 86 per cent in Paphos and 86 per cent in Paralimni.

And it looks like respite should not be expected until at least Tuesday, when temperatures are expected to drop by two degrees.

Meanwhile yesterday the committee for the welfare of the elderly at the senior citizens parliament condemned those owners of old people's homes who refuse to switch on their air conditioning during the heatwave, calling for those who break the law to be punished.

"We condemn the unacceptable position taken by certain owners of old people's homes, who do not switch on the air conditioning just to economise, especially during the days when the temperature was close to 44C," they said.

Inspections carried out during the heatwave revealed that around 15 homes did not have their air conditioning on. Also, two of the people who were admitted to hospital suffering from heatstroke were residents of old people's homes.

The committee applauded the efforts of the welfare services who quickly identified the issue after checks at various homes, but said that checks should intensify.

Source: Cyprus Mail