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Bangkok officials urge caution as heatwave hits the capital

FILE PHOTO: Bangkok Jack

Thai health officials have issued a heatwave alert as temperatures rise across many parts of the country, with the Bangkok district of Bang Na expected to hit 50°C today.

According to a Bangkok Post report, Dr Opas Karnkawinpong from the Public Health Ministry says the extreme heat could pose a particular risk to children, the elderly, and those with underlying health conditions. He adds that people who work outdoors are at increased risk of dehydration due to excessive perspiration and heat exhaustion.

April is known for being the hottest month of the year and The Thai Meteorological Department says many parts of the country can expect to see temperatures above 40°C today. The mercury is expected to rise to 40.6°C in Phetchabun, 41.5°C in Si Sa Ket, 49.4°C in the Laem Chabang area of Chon Buri, and 47.9 °C in Phuket.

The Bangkok Post reports that the highest temperature ever officially recorded in Thailand was 44.6°C, in the Muang district of Mae Hong Son, on April 28, 2016. The previous record was 44.5°C, recorded in the northern province of Uttaradit on April 27, 1960.

Yesterday, the unofficial peak temperature recorded in the Bangkok district of Bang Na reached 45.5°C, while Chon Buri reported highs of 45.8°C. Temperatures soared elsewhere in the country too, including in Phang Nga (43.3°C), Tak (41°C) and Si Sa Ket (38.4°C).

Health officials have urged people to take precautions and drink water regularly, without waiting to feel thirsty before doing so. Dr Opas advises people to avoid hot drinks such as tea or coffee, as well as alcohol and fizzy drinks.

In addition, health officials are warning people not to spend too long outdoors in order to avoid heatstroke. Dr Opas says temperatures above 41°C are particularly dangerous, as the extreme heat can provoke cramps in the legs, shoulders, or abdomen, as well as spasms and heat stroke.

SOURCE: Bangkok Post

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