Bournemouth Council issues 'red alert' warning for beaches as hundreds flock to seaside

7 August 2020, 14:43

People enjoy the hot weather at Bournemouth beach in Dorset
People enjoy the hot weather at Bournemouth beach in Dorset. Picture: PA

By Matt Drake

Bournemouth Council has issued a "red alert" for beaches as hundreds of Brits flock to the seaside as the UK braces for temperatures of almost 40C.

Hundreds of people visited Bournemouth on Friday as well as other beaches in Dorset.

The council's Beach Check app has showed red for most of its beaches which means people should "avoid" because social distancing may not be possible.

Other beaches affected include Sandbanks, Mudeford, Avon Beach, Friar's Cliff and Highcliffe.

Forecasters have predicted today's warm weather will be hotter than Barbados and Egypt.

It could even surpass the 37.8C recorded in Heathrow on July 31, which was the hottest day of the year, so far.

The Met Office has also issued an amber heat health warning and has cautioned people to drink plenty of fluids
The Met Office has also issued an amber heat health warning and has cautioned people to drink plenty of fluids. Picture: PA

The Coastguard has warned people to stay safe on the beach after rescue teams responded to 70 call-outs across the UK by midday on Friday.

HM Coastguard said around 70 call-outs had been made by midday on Friday, which is "above average for this time of year".

The Coastguard reported its busiest day for more than four years as it dealt with 329 incidents on July 31, when the UK recorded the hottest day of the year and the third warmest on record, with the mercury rising to 37.8C (100.04F) at Heathrow Airport.

Matt Leat, head of infrastructure and technology lead at HM Coastguard, said this weekend could see a similar number of call-outs as families take advantage of the heatwave.

Mr Leat said: "The coast is very busy today and that's grown across the morning and will continue to grow as the day goes on.

"Looking back to last Friday (July 31), we are going to hit that many number of call-outs potentially today and this weekend."

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The Met Office has also issued an amber heat health warning and has cautioned people to drink plenty of fluids.

London and the South East can expect to see temperatures of at least 37C.

Met Office forecaster Emma Salter said: “It will probably be one of the hottest days ever in the UK today, maybe in the top five. The hottest was 38.7C which was set last year.

“Today it will be the hottest day of the spell, with the heat staying above 35C for several days and lasting well into next week.

“There is likely to be three days in a row that temperatures will exceed 35C, and that’s only happened three times ever.

“London will see the peak, but it will be very hot throughout much of England and Wales.”

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