Pack your sunscreen and hat for a SunSmart Ekka

Today the gates of Ekka will open in preparation for nearly half a million Queenslanders, thousands of strawberry sundaes, and plenty of rides and entertainment!

To help Queenslanders make the most of Ekka and avoid going home a little redder, Cancer Council Queensland CEO Ms Chris McMillan encouraged show-goers to make sun safety a priority.

The weather is expected to remain warm and sunny throughout the duration of Ekka, with the UV index reaching 5 or 6 each day.

“Sun protection is required when the UV Index is three or above – and we continue to see the UV Index far exceed that throughout winter days here in Queensland,” Ms McMillan said.

“When outside you can get burnt in as little as 10-15 minutes so it’s important to be prepared.

“Make sure you slop on sunscreen before you go and reapply throughout the day, slap on a hat, slide on sunglasses, slip on clothing with sleeves and seek shade when you can.

“Sunburn is a serious sign of skin damage, which increases the risk of skin cancer – and should be actively avoided.

“Once skin damage occurs from UV radiation, it is impossible to reverse, but it is never too late to make improvements to your sun protection behaviours.

Ms McMillan urged Ekka attendees to download a free SunSmart app for live updates on UV levels.

“Ekka is an annual highlight for so many people right across Queensland – but the last thing you want is to go home sunburnt,” she said.

“With our free SunSmart app you can check the UV levels live and stay protected as you take in the sights and activities at Ekka.”

Each year in Queensland around 324,000 non-melanoma skin cancers and 3700 skin cancers are diagnosed in Queensland each year.

More information about Cancer Council Queensland is available via 13 11 20 or

About the SunSmart app:
The SunSmart app was developed by Cancer Council Victoria, with support from VicHealth, ARPANSA and the Bureau of Meteorology. The app is free for smartphones and tablets and can be found by searching ‘SunSmart’ in the app store. Sun protection times and UV levels are also available at

For more information or interviews, please contact:

Laura McKoy,
Public Relations Manager,
Cancer Council Queensland
Phone: (07) 3634 5345
Mobile: 0409 001 171