Olympic athletes ‘could die of overheating’ due to 'dangerous temperatures' at Paris 2024 Games

18 June 2024, 16:46

Olympic athletes ‘could die of overheating’ due to 'dangerous temperatures' at Paris 2024 Games
Olympic athletes ‘could die of overheating’ due to 'dangerous temperatures' at Paris 2024 Games. Picture: Alamy

By Danielle de Wolfe

Olympic athletes ‘could die of overheating’ at this summer's Paris 2024 games as 'dangerous temperatures' are set to sweep Europe.

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It follows Olympic athletes raising fears of soaring temperatures and potential heat stroke at the Tokyo Olympics, with a new study highlighting the potential risks.

Competitors could be exposed to temperatures that "may have long-term, multi-organ consequences" on athletes and "may even be fatal”, according to the report.

Produced by the British Association for Sustainable Sport (Basis) and FrontRunners, the report, entitled “Rings of Fire”, highlights the risks facing athletes as global temperatures rise.

The report's stark findings reveal that “leading athletes are warning that intense heat at the Paris Olympics in July-August 2025 could lead to competitors collapsing and in worst case scenarios dying during the Games.”

The report's stark findings reveal that “leading athletes are warning that intense heat at the Paris Olympics in July-August 2025 could lead to competitors collapsing and in worst case scenarios dying during the Games.”
The report's stark findings reveal that “leading athletes are warning that intense heat at the Paris Olympics in July-August 2025 could lead to competitors collapsing and in worst case scenarios dying during the Games.”. Picture: Alamy

The 2020 Tokyo Games became known as the "hottest in history," with temperatures exceeding 34°C and humidity reaching a sweltering 70 percent.

According to the report, the Paris games have the potential to surpass those temperatures, with the burning of fossil fuels a contributing factor

Read more: ISIS warns of 'lone wolf' drone attacks on Eiffel Tower in latest terror threat on Paris Olympics

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Temperatures have already led to serious illness, with numerous Olympians vomiting and fainting at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

The heat also caused world number two tennis star, Daniel Medvedev, to fear for his life.

The report was written with the help of 11 Olympians, as well as climate scientists at Climate Central and heat physiologists from the University of Portsmouth.

The report was written with the help of 11 Olympians, as well as climate scientists at Climate Central and heat physiologists from the University of Portsmouth.
The report was written with the help of 11 Olympians, as well as climate scientists at Climate Central and heat physiologists from the University of Portsmouth. Picture: Alamy

The report also references the deadly heatwave experienced by France in 2003.

More than 14,000 people died as a result of soaring temperatures, with temperatures reaching a record-breaking 42°C.

According to report contributor Jamie Farndale, a rugby 7’s for Great Britain Rugby, describing the difficulty where recovery between matches is concerned.

However, both Farndale and Indian triathlete, Pragnya Mohan, both said the heat would not stop them competeing.

Mohan added, “As athletes, we are training to push ourselves to the limit. When we compete we don’t actually think about the dangers we are putting our bodies through.”

It comes weeks after Islamic State has called on "lone wolves" to carry out drone strikes on Paris during the 2024 Olympics.

The terror group made an apparent bomb threat on the French capital, releasing a mock-up image of a drone being flown at the Eifell Tower on a website linked to the militant Islamist group.

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