Manila Suspends Face-to-Face Classes as Dangerous Heat Wave Grips City

Manila suspends face-to-face classes due to dangerous 43°C heat index forecast, posing health risks. Authorities urge public to take precautions against heat-related illnesses.

Nitish Verma
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Manila Suspends Face-to-Face Classes as Dangerous Heat Wave Grips City

Manila Suspends Face-to-Face Classes as Dangerous Heat Wave Grips City

The Manila, Philippines area has suspended face-to-face classes on April 24, 2024 due to a dangerous 43°C heat index forecast in Caloocan, Malabon, San Juan, Las Piñas, Navotas, and Pasay City. The heat index, which measures the combined effect of air temperature and relative humidity, is expected to reach dangerously high levels during the Philippines' warm and dry season from March to May.

Local and national authorities have made announcements regarding the class suspensions in response to the extreme heat conditions. Several local government units in Metro Manila, including Manila, Las Piñas, Parañaque, and Caloocan, have suspended face-to-face classes at all levels from April 25 to 26 due to a dangerous heat index forecast of up to 44°C in the affected areas.

The suspension is based on a warning from the state weather bureau PAGASA, which has identified at least 31 areas in the Philippines that are expected to experience dangerous heat levels on April 24. According to the latest bulletin from PAGASA, 30 areas in the country will be under the 'danger' classification, with temperatures ranging from 42 to 46 degrees Celsius.

Why this matters: The extreme heat conditions pose significant health risks to the population, particularly students and staff who would normally attend face-to-face classes. The decision to suspend in-person classes is a precautionary measure to protect the well-being of those who would be exposed to the dangerous temperatures.

The Department of Health has advised the public to limit time spent outdoors, stay hydrated, and take other precautions to prevent heat-related illnesses during this period. Heat-related illnesses can be avoided by staying hydrated, wearing loose and light clothes, limiting outdoor activities, and using sun protection.

The state weather bureau defines heat index as the measure of the contribution that high humidity makes with abnormally high temperatures in reducing the body's ability to cool itself. Once the heat index reaches 42 to 51 degrees Celsius, it is considered part of the 'danger category,' which may lead to various heat-related illnesses such as heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and even heat stroke.

The City of Manila has announced the suspension of in-person classes in all levels, both public and private, until Friday, April 26, due to the forecasted dangerous heat index level of 44°C according to the Manila Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office. The Department of Health has advised the public to "find shade and rest, remove layered clothing, apply a cold compress, drink cold water slowly, and seek immediate medical assistance" if they experience symptoms of heat-related illnesses.

Key Takeaways

  • Face-to-face classes suspended in Manila, Philippines on April 24-26, 2024 due to 43-44°C heat index.
  • Suspension by local and national authorities in response to extreme heat warning from weather bureau PAGASA.
  • Heat index poses health risks, especially for students and staff; precautionary measure to protect well-being.
  • Public advised to limit outdoor time, stay hydrated, and take precautions to prevent heat-related illnesses.
  • Heat index above 42-51°C considered 'danger category', potentially leading to heat cramps, exhaustion, and stroke.