Hot spell prompts sun-smart tips

Seeking shade . . . Students enjoy an ice cream on the Otago Museum lawn in Dunedin on Monday are (from left) Connie Sullivan (20), of Wellington, Laura Wills (21), of Havelock North, and Caitlin MacDonald (20), of Wellington. PHOTO: SHAWN MCAVINUE

The hot weather Dunedin has been enjoying is set to come to an abrupt halt tomorrow night but the Cancer Society is reminding people to remain sun-smart.

Niwa climate scientist Nava Fedaeff said the long run of above-average temperatures in Dunedin would end when a southerly change moved through tomorrow evening bringing markedly cooler temperatures and rain for the weekend.

The maximum temperatures expected in Dunedin today and tomorrow were expected to be up to 20degC in Musselburgh and up to 24degC at Dunedin Airport.

Cancer Society Otago and Southland health promotion co-ordinator Bridget Forsyth said people needed to be “sun-smart” from the start of September to the end of April.

The sun’s invisible ultraviolet radiation (UV) resulted in people getting burnt, even on cool and cloudy days.

Sun protection was necessary when the UV index was three or above, she said.

People could check the index at or on the free app uv2Day.

People should seek shade when the UV was most intense and wear close-fitting, wrap-around-style sunglasses and sun-protective clothing.

“We want people to wear knee-length shorts and tops with collars and sleeves. Wide-brimmed or bucket-style hats are best to cover your head, neck and ears.”

A cap failed to be sun-smart because it left the neck, ears and sides of your face exposed. Sunscreen needed to be stored below 30degC to work effectively.

Sunscreen needed to be applied 20 minutes before a person was exposed to UV and should be reapplied every two hours, after physical activity, swimming or towel drying, she said.


The temperatures

Dunedin average

Musselburgh: October: 14.7degC, November: 16.1degC

Dunedin Airport: October: 16.2degC, November: 17.8degC

Temperature at 5pm on Monday

Musselburgh: 20.6degC

Dunedin Airport: 23degC

Warmest October day in Dunedin on record.

Musselburgh: 31degC on October 28, 1977.

Dunedin Airport: 30.4degC on October 28, 1977.