The Isle of Wight occasionally experiences very high temperatures in summer although not quite to the extent that the UK Mainland sometimes sees.
Our local climate is heavily influenced by the sea, and in turn the wind direction, so often in summer when the UK mainland is seeing a heatwave, we may be 2°C or 3°C cooler due to the marine influence.
In spring and early summer the sea temperature can on occasion be over 10’c colder than the land, so when the wind blows from the English Channel, the island is cooled significantly, especially within a few miles of the windward coast, however the further you move away from that windward coast, the warmer it will become, but on occasion we see either very light winds or winds from a more northern quadrant, and if is combined with a warm or hot airmass, we often match the mainland’s maxima’s.
Our scale is based upon the type of temperatures that we are used to here on the island, therefor may not represent what other national agencies are predicting.
LEVEL 1 – 24’c to 26’c
Most people will experience no ill effects from this level of heat, however if you are in the sun for prolonged periods of time and/or the winds are very light, some susceptible people may start to feel the heat and this may cause a few issues for some.
LEVEL 2 – 26’c to 28’c
At level 2 people will certainly start to feel the heat on our little island. Prolonged sun exposure will give a much higher impact but even in the shade some people will feel the effects of the temperature. The risk is low to moderate for most people but once again a few people will likely struggle with this level of warmth, especially if the winds are light.
LEVEL 3 – 28’c to 30’c
We don’t often see a level 3 heat alert on the Isle of Wight, but when we do we certainly feel it! A significant amount of people will start to really notice the heat in direct sunlight, especially if the winds are light. Susceptible people are at risk of heat stroke at these temperatures and even in the shade it may be difficult to find relief, although if there is a good breeze shaded areas will feel comfortable.
LEVEL 4 – 30’c to 32’c
It is very unusual to see temperatures at this level but over the last few years the island has upon occasion experienced this level of heat.
Heatstroke is a real risk, especially for people who are not used to hot conditions. In direct sunlight the heat risks are many times higher than what you would experience in the shade, but even in the shade it will start to become difficult to find relief and a good breeze will only help to a limited extent.
LEVEL 5 – above 32’c
It is very rare to see temperatures this high on the island but during the hottest spells of some summers it can occasionally happen.
Avoid spending too much time outside in direct sunlight as the risk of heat stroke is significant. Spending time in the shade is highly recommended although it wont provide much relief as even here the heat will be felt.
Please note that the information above may not apply to everyone. Some people have a good tolerance for hot weather although most people do start to find it difficult once the temperatures reaches 30’c or higher.