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Open AccessReview

Overview of Existing Heat-Health Warning Systems in Europe

1
Federal Office of Meteorology and Climatology MeteoSwiss, 8058 Zurich Airport, Switzerland
2
Meteorology Group, Dept. Applied Mathematics and Computer Sciences, University of Cantabria, 39005 Santander, Spain
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Centre of Bioclimatology (CIBIC), University of Florence, 50144 Florence, Italy
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Department of Agriculture, Food, Environment and Forestry (DAGRI), University of Florence, 50144 Florence, Italy
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Institute of BioEconomy—National Research Council, 50019 Florence, Italy
6
FAME Laboratory, Department of Exercise Science, University of Thessaly, 42100 Trikala, Greece
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Department of Nutrition and Exercise Sciences, University of Copenhagen (NEXS), 2100 Copenhagen, Denmark
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16(15), 2657; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph16152657
Received: 28 June 2019 / Revised: 18 July 2019 / Accepted: 19 July 2019 / Published: 25 July 2019
The frequency of extreme heat events, such as the summer of 2003 in Europe, and their corresponding consequences for human beings are expected to increase under a warmer climate. The joint collaboration of institutional agencies and multidisciplinary approaches is essential for a successful development of heat-health warning systems and action plans which can reduce the impacts of extreme heat on the population. The present work constitutes a state-of-the-art review of 16 European heat-health warning systems and heat-health action plans, based on the existing literature, web search (over the National Meteorological Services websites) and questionnaires. The aim of this study is to pave the way for future heat-health warning systems, such as the one currently under development in the framework of the Horizon 2020 HEAT-SHIELD project. Some aspects are highlighted among the variety of examined European warning systems. The meteorological variables that trigger the warnings should present a clear link with the impact under consideration and should be chosen depending on the purpose and target of the warnings. Setting long-term planning actions as well as pre-alert levels might prevent and reduce damages due to heat. Finally, education and communication are key elements of the success of a warning system. View Full-Text
Keywords: heat-health warning system; action plan; intervention strategy; user-tailored; heat stress heat-health warning system; action plan; intervention strategy; user-tailored; heat stress
MDPI and ACS Style

Casanueva, A.; Burgstall, A.; Kotlarski, S.; Messeri, A.; Morabito, M.; Flouris, A.D.; Nybo, L.; Spirig, C.; Schwierz, C. Overview of Existing Heat-Health Warning Systems in Europe. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2019, 16, 2657.

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