Amber warning in place for extreme heat ahead of record temperatures of up to 37C next week

The Met Office has issued an amber weather warning for extreme heat across England ahead of Monday's forecast where for the first time ever the country is expected to reach highs of 40C.
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New Health Secretary Steve Barclay has said extra measures are being put in place for ambulance services as an extreme heat warning comes into force.

He said additional contingency support, such as more call handlers and extra working hours, are being put in place on Monday and Tuesday.

What are your rights if you think it is too hot to work?

A national emergency has been declared after a red extreme heat warning was issued for the first time (Credit: Met Office)A national emergency has been declared after a red extreme heat warning was issued for the first time (Credit: Met Office)
A national emergency has been declared after a red extreme heat warning was issued for the first time (Credit: Met Office)
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The UK is currently recording temperatures higher than Spain or the Bahamas and with record-breaking temperatures which could put lives at risk forecast for the next few days, many are concerned not only about getting to and from their place of employment but also the conditions they will have to work in.

As temperatures soar, many will find their work uncomfortable and for some it could be dangerous.

Although millions now have the benefit of working from home or in an air-conditioned office, vocations such as being a nurse, chef or construction worker, means having to endure sweltering temperatures in full uniform during their shifts.

There are rules around minimum working temperatures in the UK, but there are no laws for maximum temperatures.

Temperatures across England are expected to soar to nearly 40C over the next couple of daysTemperatures across England are expected to soar to nearly 40C over the next couple of days
Temperatures across England are expected to soar to nearly 40C over the next couple of days
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There have been calls by several trade unions to impose a maximum working temperature for workers in the UK.

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What if it is too hot to work?

You have no legal right to say it is too hot to work, although that does not mean you can't tell your boss this and they may listen.

The Health & Safety Executive (HSE) says the minimum temperature for working is 16C or 13C if the work involves physical exertion.

Your employer does have to consider "duty of care" which is their legal duty to ensure you are safe in the workplace, but there is no hard-set rule regarding temperature.

What has the Met Office said?

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Met Office Chief Meteorologist Paul Gundersen said: “Exceptional, perhaps record-breaking temperatures are likely early next week, quite widely across the red warning area on Monday, and focussed a little more east and north on Tuesday.

“Currently there is a 50 per cent chance we could see temperatures top 40C and 80 per cent we will see a new maximum temperature reached.

“Nights are also likely to be exceptionally warm, especially in urban areas.”

Necessary changes to working practices and daily routines may be necessary, due to travel disruption including, road closures, delays and cancellations to rail and air travel services.

How can you keep your pets cool during the heatwave?

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The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) advises dog owners to walk their pets in the morning or evening when it is cooler, and to ensure they have enough shade and water.

You can also keep them cool with pet-friendly frozen treats, and pet-safe sun cream is also available.

Never leave pets alone in parked cars, and make sure you are aware of the key signs of heatstroke – symptoms in dogs and cats can include panting, diarrhoea and restlessness.

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