People residing in Johannesburg and other parts of the country are urged to exercise caution this weekend and early next week as a heatwave warning has been issued.

The South African Weather Service (SAWS) said that although rainfall was expected, temperatures were expected to soar in the coming days.

The heatwave (defined as “when for three days the maximum temperature is five degrees higher than the mean maximum for the hottest month”) would occur in Gauteng and other parts of the country including parts of the North West, Limpopo and Mpumalanga.

The hot weather is expected to begin in Joburg when a maximum of 33 degrees Celsius is expected, with a 30 percent chance of afternoon showers and thunder showers.

The temperatures are expected to be similar this weekend with a maximum of 33C for Saturday and 34C from Sunday but no rain was forecast for this period.

Downpours were expected from Monday to Thursday with a 30 percent chance of rainfall on these days.

The heatwave was expected to continue on Monday when a high of 33C was expected.

The SAWS said the heatwave warning would be over by Tuesday but maximum temperatures were still expected to peak in the high twenties to the low thirties until Thursday.

Joburg Emergency Services spokesman Robert Mulaudzi said the city had noted the warning and that they would be on high alert.

“Exposure to this kind of heat can easily lead to heat cramps, exhaustion or heat stroke.”

He urged people to take special care during the hot weather and said that they should stay indoors if possible between 11am and 3pm, consume liquids, wear light clothing and wear hats and sunscreen.

He added that children or pets shouldn’t be left in parked, locked cars during the hot weather and that alcoholic, caffeinated or carbonated drinks should be avoided.

Mulaudzi said that as veld fires were prevalent during hot dry and windy weather, people were discouraged from dumping their burning cigarettes butts in dry grass or leaving open fires unmonitored.