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19 July, 2024
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Heatstroke claims life, hospitalizes three amid scorching temperatures

Deadly heatwave grips Cyprus as scorching temperatures persist

Newsroom / CNA

One fatality and three hospitalizations due to heatstroke have been reported, according to Charalampos Charilaou, spokesperson of the State Health Services Organisation. A 90-year-old man tragically lost his life to heatstroke, while two individuals aged 78 and 77 are in critical condition at Nicosia General Hospital. Additionally, an 80-year-old patient is currently intubated in the Intensive Care Unit at Limassol General Hospital.

With temperatures exceeding 40 degrees Celsius, the oppressive heat is expected to persist until Thursday, warned Dr. Kleanthis Nikolaides, Director of the Department of Meteorology. Inland areas will experience temperatures as high as 41 degrees Celsius, while coastal regions can expect 35-37 degrees and the higher mountains around 32 degrees.

Dr. Nikolaides emphasized that no significant temperature change is anticipated until Wednesday or Thursday. He added that the coming days will witness temperatures surpassing 40 degrees Celsius, well above the usual averages for this period.

Charalampos Charilaou provided information on the symptoms of heatstroke, which include severe headaches, exhaustion, lethargy, fainting tendencies, difficulty breathing, nausea, vomiting, high fever, diarrhea, confusion, and disorientation. He urged the public, particularly vulnerable groups such as the elderly and those with pre-existing medical conditions, to exercise extreme caution, seek shade, preferably with air-conditioning, avoid prolonged sun exposure, stay hydrated, dress lightly, and promptly consult a healthcare professional if symptoms arise.

Acknowledging the vulnerability of certain groups, Charilaou assured that hospitals are prepared to handle any heat-related incidents, as they have dealt with such cases in the past.

Dr. Nikolaides noted that although Cyprus has experienced high temperatures before, reaching 45 degrees Celsius is unusual. Typically, temperatures range between 40-43 degrees Celsius, with occasional occurrences of 42-43 degrees. He emphasized the heightened risk between 10:00 am and 4:00-5:00 pm, particularly from 12:00 to 3:00 pm when intense solar radiation and extreme temperatures combine.

The Department of Meteorology diligently monitors the situation and issues weather forecasts every eight hours. Dr. Nikolaides explained that a persistent high-pressure system from the Atlantic region, combined with a thermal low prevalent during the summer, has contributed to the current extreme temperatures and dry air mass in the central and eastern Mediterranean.

Saturday saw temperatures peak at 45 degrees Celsius inland, reflecting the severity of the ongoing heatwave.

Cyprus  |  heat  |  weather  |  heatstroke  |  health

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