‘Temperatures too high for Met Opera audience’

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The Metropolitan Opera in New York is calling for the state of New York to fund emergency vaccinations for staff and visitors to reduce the risk of heat illness.

The opera house, considered one of the world’s finest, is relying on donations to tackle the issue.

Staff and visitors are urged to use the Met’s hotline for weather alerts – and be ready to delay or cancel performances if necessary.

The Met’s organisation said there had been at least two incidents of staff being taken to hospital with heat-related illness.

It has been granted a federal emergency declaration for heat-related illnesses at the Lyric Opera of Chicago and San Francisco Opera.

The Met Opera’s spokeswoman told BBC News it has requested donations of $250,000 (£189,000) to fund booster shots as the demand increases when temperatures soar.

Last year, 74 people lost consciousness at the Opera House – and many were unwell throughout the day.

In recent years, the Met has regularly had to close and reschedule performances, it said.

Staff said they were used to using heat breaks.

However, in a statement, the Met Opera said: “In certain extreme conditions, the combination of heat, humidity and wind can make it difficult for people to safely remain in the building during performances.”

According to the Met’s website, the most up-to-date heat alerts can be found on its MetWeather smartphone app – and on its website’s heat widget.

The Met’s website notes that the Met Opera is still “working to form a heat policy for employees” to consider staff “at the highest risk from heat illness”.

– BBC News

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