With severe cold weather conditions forecast to continue across the country, Public Health England (PHE) is reminding people to look out for those who are vulnerable during low temperatures.
Icy weather conditions can be especially dangerous for older people who are at increased risks of falls and poor health.
With new lockdown measures in force, there is also the risk that more older people will feel isolated at home and cut off from their family and friends.
Dr Owen Landeg, principal environmental public health scientist at PHE, said: ‘During this cold spell we all need to be looking out for frail or older neighbours or relatives, especially those living alone or who have serious illnesses.
‘We still need to be aware of COVID-19 safety and local restrictions, but regular phone calls or socially-distant visits on their doorstep can make all the difference.
‘Simple things – like reminding them to keep their homes well heated, to at least 18 Celsius, 356 Fahrenheit, if possible, and if they’re venturing out in icy conditions wearing shoes with a good grip to help prevent falls, will all help keep them safe and healthy.’
Age Scotland issued a similar warning yesterday (January 6) urging people to look out for their older friends, relatives and neighbours during the cold snap.
Steve Ramsdale, chief meteorologist at the Met Office, said: ‘January has got off to a cold start, with widespread low temperatures, frost and ice across the country.
‘Over the next few days temperatures are generally limited to between three to seven celsius by day and falling widely below freezing overnight with a brisk north easterly wind making it feel even colder for many.
‘Snow and sleet is possible, particularly over higher ground in the north of the UK early in the week and perhaps further south towards the end of the week.
‘Temperatures are expected to start to recover as we go through the weekend and into the start of next week.’
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