No major disruption in West Lothian despite heatwave

Police in West Lothian have cautioned people against cold water swimming in the midst of the current heatwave, as the local council assured residents it did not expect any “significant” disruption to services.

By Stuart Sommerville, LDR
Tuesday, 19th July 2022, 3:11 pm
Updated Tuesday, 19th July 2022, 3:12 pm

West Lothian was expected to escape the fierce sun feared on Tuesday- with most of the county blanketed under cloud and haze for much of the day.

With record temperatures expected to be broken across the UK however the temperature was still expected to be as high as 29C across the county – with the mercury not expected to drop into the teens until close to midnight.

And ahead of the heatwave local police cautioned against cold water swimming warning of the dangers of Cold Water Shock even in the hottest of days. Writing on social media, local officers said: “While it can be tempting to enter the water in warmer weather, sudden immersion can lead to Cold Water Shock (CWS).

“CWS can affect even the strongest swimmers as it overwhelms the ability to breathe and to swim, which can lead to drowning.

“With more hot weather on the way, it is important to learn how to keep safe around water, follow local safety guidance and to avoid alcohol on and near waterways. The Water Safety Code is an easy-to-remember three-step code, and provides some life saving advice that aims to help keep you and those you are with safe when near open water.”

The three clear warnings are: Stop and Think, Spot the Dangers; Stay Together, Stay Safe, and in an emergency Dial 999.

A West Lothian Council spokesperson said on Tuesday morning: “We are not expecting any significant disruption to services as a result of the amber weather warning, although the delivery of some services may be delayed.

Portobello Beach was packed with sun seekers on Tuesday as temperatures soared. Photo by Lisa Ferguson.

“Minor changes to working arrangements during the amber warning are permitted to ensure services can still be delivered whilst keeping our staff safe.

“This can vary widely due to the huge range of services delivered by the council, but include encouraging our outdoors-based staff take more water and shade breaks, or allowing staff to adjust their working patterns where possible, to avoid travel at peak times or the hottest part of the day.”

“Guidance has been issued to all staff reminding them of the public health advice, including staying hydrated, drinking plenty of fluids and limiting time outside between 11am and 3pm when the sun is hottest.”