FILE PHOTO: A customer experiences a large-scale misting tower allotting ultra-fine mist throughout a proving take a look at of warmth countermeasures for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Video games in Tokyo, Japan July 25, 2019. REUTERS/Issei Kato
July 20, 2021
By Angie Teo and Ju-min Park
TOKYO (Reuters) – Mist-spraying stations for Olympic horses and cooling vests for referees are among the many instruments organisers are rolling out for the Tokyo 2020 Video games, the place contributors will face scorching warmth and intense humidity – on prime of a worsening pandemic.
Whereas the speedy problem of holding the Video games amid the COVID-19 disaster has overshadowed nearly all different issues, warmth has been a longstanding fear. Summer time temperatures in Tokyo can spike to 35 diploma Celsius or extra.
“There will probably be cooling stations not only for human beings but in addition for horses,” Tokyo 2020 Video games Supply Officer Hidemasa Nakamura informed reporters on Sunday. “For volunteers, we’ve got salt candies, tablets and ice cream.”
Whereas organisers have moved the marathon and race-walk occasions to the cooler northern metropolis of Sapporo, consultants have warned of the chance from heastroke for athletes and workers, particularly these unused to Tokyo’s warmth or these working lengthy hours exterior.
As temperatures rise following the annual wet season that simply ended, so does the chance of warmth stroke, stated Motoaki Takekawa, an official within the environment surroundings division of the Japan Meteorological Company.
The Video games run from July 23 to Aug.8, coinciding with the most well liked temperatures within the nation.
Emergency drugs consultants have warned that first responders on the Video games may simply confuse heatstroke and coronavirus sufferers, as a result of the sicknesses bear related signs resembling excessive temperature and dehydration.
“For overseas athletes, they aren’t used to Japan’s scorching climate,” stated Satoru Takizawa, a 25-year-old Tokyo workplace employee, who stated the situations “weren’t truthful” to guests.
Medical workers stationed at venues are liable to warmth sickness themelves, due to their additional protecting gear, in accordance with Shoji Yokobori, the medical officer in control of the weightlifting venue.
He stated the private protecting gear turned “a burden” within the warmth.
“PPE may be very powerful,” he stated. “We could have heatstroke.”
(Reporting by Angie Teo, Andrew Bibee, Ju-min Park; Modifying by David Dolan and Mike Collett-White)