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Keep Safe in the Sun

As the sun finally starts to make an appearance and people are out and about, the Health Promotion Unit is reminding people to be "sunsafe" while outside. Sun Awareness

They say "the UV index is high at this time of year due to anomalies in the ozone. People are quite often unaware that you can be more likely to get sunburnt in May than in August. Many of us spend the whole day outside at the weekend and on holidays so we are encouraging people to look after their skin from now and for the whole summer.

The UV Index is a measure of the UV radiation level at the Earth's surface and is an indicator for the potential for skin damage. The higher the sun is in the sky the higher the UV radiation level.  This means that during the day the highest UV will usually be around mid-day. The UV also changes throughout the year with the highest point being Summer solstice, 21st June, it then starts to decline and the lowest UV is at the Winter solstice, 21st December.

We tend to think that UV is lower when there is cloud cover and while this is true for thick clouds, thin, white cloud cover can magnify UV radiation which makes it more harmful for our skin. The World Health Organisation recommends that we protect our skin from a UVI of 3 upwards."

There are lots of things we can do to protect our skin and help prevent skin cancer:-

  • spend time in the shade between 11am and 3pm
  • make sure you never burn
  • cover up with a hat, suitable clothing and sunglasses
  • take extra care with children
  • use at least factor 15 sunscreen

If you would like more details about the UV Index or skin cancer prevention please call the Health Promotion Unit on 707311 or e-mail There is also more information at