What to do in specific emergencies

There are things you can do to help prepare for flooding, drought, high winds, heatwaves, snow and other emergency situations. All guidance is listed below.


A 'Heat-Health watch' system operates from 1 June to 15 September which, based on Met Office forecasts, will trigger levels of response from the Department of Health, the NHS, Social Services and other bodies. The heatwave threshold for the South East of England is 31C day time and 16C at night time as these temperatures could have a significant effect on health if reached on at least two consecutive days.

Protection during a Heatwave

  • Pay attention to weather warnings issued by weather forecasts and Heatwave information is posted at Met Office Heat-Health.   
  • If you can, avoid going out in the hottest part of the day (11am-3pm)
  • If you cannot avoid strenuous outdoor activity such as sport, DIY or gardening, do it during the cooler parts of the day like early morning
  • If you must go out, stay in the shade. Wear a hat and light, loose fitting clothes, preferably cotton.
  • If you are outside for some time, take plenty of water with you
  • Keep windows closed whilst the room is cooler than it is outside. Open them when the temperature inside rises, and at night for ventilation. If you are worried about security, at least open windows on the first floor and above.
  • Stay in the coolest rooms as much as possible
  • Close the curtains in rooms that get a lot of sun
  • Take cool showers or baths, and splash yourself several times a day with cold water, particularly your face and the back of your neck
  • Drink water or fruit juices. Drink regularly, even if you do not feel thirsty
  • Eat as you normally would. Try to eat more cold food, particularly salads and fruit, which contain water
  • Contact your doctor, a pharmacist or NHS Direct if suffering from the effects of heatwave.

    For more detailed advice and information please see the NHS Choices Heatwave Information web pages or the Public Health England - Heatwave plan for England.

Pets and Hot Weather

  • Follow seasonal advice from the RSPCA on keeping pets and animals safe.

We'd also like to remind you NOT to cool off in open water as this can be extremely dangerous - there were two water-related fatalities in Milton Keynes last year – the only safe place to swim is in a swimming pool.