It's a sweltering Onam for Kerala as temperature keeps climbing in several districts

Kerala Heat Wave Pathanamthitta | File Photo: Nikhilraj P / Manorama
Pedestrians use umbrellas to avoid exposure to sunlight at Central Junction in Pathanamthitta. Photo: P Nikhil Raj/Manorama

Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala is reeling under unprecedented heat, with temperatures showing no signs of cooling down in the state.

On Monday, Kollam recorded 36 degrees Celsius, while Kottayam has steadily been recording 35 degrees Celsius for over a week now.

Alappuzha, Kannur and Pathanamthitta saw the temperature go up to 34 degrees Celsius, while Thiruvananthapuram recorded 33 degrees Celsius on the day.

All districts have been experiencing heat that is two to five degrees above normal over the past week.

The Indian Meteorological Department has warned of hot days ahead and the Kerala State Disaster Management Authority has issued safety precautions.

KSDMA's safety instructions:

1. The general public should avoid direct exposure to sunlight for prolonged periods between 11 am and 3 pm.

2. Use water resourcefully and store maximum water during rains.

3. Always keep a water bottle handy to prevent dehydration. Drink plenty of water even if not thirsty.

4. Avoid consumption of hot or cold beverages, including liquor, tea, coffee and other soft drinks.

5. Wear loose and light-coloured cotton clothes and footwear when

6. There is a potential risk of forest fires spreading due to a rise in temperature. Hence, tourists and those residing near forest areas should take particular precautions. The instructions of the forest department should be followed strictly.

7. Incidents of fire are likely to increase and spread, especially in markets, buildings, waste collection and deposit centres (dumping yards). A proper fire audit should be conducted and proper safety precautions should be taken. Those who reside or run establishments near areas with a fire hazard risk should be careful.

8. Schools and parents should take necessary measures to ensure students aren't directly exposed to sunlight. Assemblies and other events that could expose children to the sun should be avoided or rescheduled. Schools taking children on field trips should ensure students are not exposed to direct sunlight between 11 am and 3 pm.

9. All educational institutions should ensure clean drinking water and air circulation in classrooms. Authorities concerned must ensure there is adequate drinking water available in exam halls as well.

10. Elder citizens, pregnant women, children, differently abled and those suffering from other diseases should avoid direct exposure to sunlight.

11. Food aggregators must ensure the safety of their online delivery executives on two-wheelers. They should be instructed to dress appropriately so as to avoid heat exposure and be allowed to rest for a while during their trips if necessary.

12. Journalists and police officers should use umbrellas from 11 am to 3 pm. Be good Samaritans and offer water to on-duty police officers.

13. Construction workers, farmers, roadside vendors and others engaged in strenuous work may adjust their working hours. They are also advised to take adequate rest.

14. Cattle should not be left to graze in the afternoon. Domestic animals should not be tied up in the sun. Ensure access to water for animals and birds.

15. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. Drink ORS solution or buttermilk if fatigued.

16. Do not leave children or pets unattended in parked/closed vehicles.

17. If uncomfortable, rest immediately and seek medical attention.

18. Adhere to official warnings of the Met department and the KSDMA.

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