BCP COUNCIL have activated its Severe Weather Emergency Protocol (SWEP) following the Met Offices’ first ever extreme heat weather warning yesterday.

The severe weather emergency protocol aims to prevent rough sleeping during extreme cold weather.

When night-time temperatures go below zero SWEP provides emergency accommodation for rough sleepers.

However Public Health England assisted in amending the briefing last summer to include responding to heatwave risks for people on the streets and in homelessness services.

BCP Council’s Lead Member for Homelessness Councillor Hazel Allen, said: “The very hot weather we are experiencing means anyone on the street is at higher risk of becoming very unwell.

“We are working with St Mungo’s to ensure anyone who is currently on the street is receiving regular welfare checks, provided with water and sun cream as well as advice on how to stay safe and well.

“This is in addition to the ongoing work already provided to proactively engage with and support individuals to move off the streets and into appropriate accommodation and related access to support services.”

St Mungo’s, the council’s outreach team will be increasing their usual checks on individuals across the area during the very hot weather.

Bournemouth Echo:

A number of cooling-off locations are also being provided, where people will be directed to if they need somewhere safe to rest in the cool and receive support.

David Leatherbarrow, Deputy Manager of the St Mungo’s BCP Outreach Team, said: “Rough sleeping is always dangerous, but in the hot weather it can be life threatening.

“The hot weather emergency response has been activated across Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole to provide urgent support to people that are sleeping rough in this heat.

“We urge members of the public to be vigilant. If you see anyone that requires urgent medical help, please call 999.”

Residents concerned for someone sleeping rough are advised to contact Streetlink on 0300 500 0914 or visit www.streetlink.org.uk.