Spain travel warning: Canary and Balearic Islands face ‘extreme’ temperatures over next three months
The Canary and Balearic Islands are currently on “very high” summer heatwave alert
Aemet, the Spanish state’s meteorological agency, has said temperatures are expected to be 60% warmer in the Canary Islands, while in the Balearics the weather is forecast to be 70% hotter than normal.
The extreme heatwave will affect tourists visiting some of Spain’s most popular holiday spots, including Tenerife, Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, Majorca and Ibiza.
Local authorities in the Canary Islands have already launched an emergency heat prevention plan, which is set to last until 15 September, and temperatures are forecast to reach 42C this weekend.
A surveillance system to assess the impact of high temperatures on the health of the population has been put in place, while healthcare centres are also on high alert to deal with a potential influx of patients affected by the intense heat.
A health spokesperson from the Canary Islands said: "These actions are intended to increase individual prevention capacity to face the heat in the Canary Islands by applying measures that are easy and accessible.
“All the hospitals and the Canary Islands Emergency Service (SUC) have staff designated and specially trained to deal with and effectively coordinate the services in the event of a possible heatwave, as well as the established communication channels."
Advice for tourists
Holidaymakers heading to the Canaries or Balearics this summer are advised to stay in the shade as much as possible to avoid suffering heat exhaustion or heatstroke, and keep hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
Heat exhaustion is the precursor to heatstroke and is the body’s response to overheating, often caused by a loss of water and salt.
It is not a serious condition but it can lead to headaches, dizziness and nausea. Symptoms will generally improve once the body cools down. If not treated, heat exhaustion can develop into heatstroke, the most serious heat-related condition, which can see body temperatures rise to 40C or higher.
To help prevent the risk of heatstroke, tourists can take the following precautions:
- Drink plenty of cold drinks, especially when exercising
- Take cool baths or showers
- Wear light-coloured, loose clothing
- Sprinkle water over skin or clothes
- Avoid the sun between 11am and 3pm
- Avoid excess alcohol
- Avoid extreme exercise