Australia fries while US freezes in extreme weather conditions


Australia face a sweltering heatwave as New York is plummeted into coldest January in decades. Source: Austin Neill / Unsplash

JANUARY has already dished up some of the most dichotomous weather forecasts the world has seen in recent history. While the US shivers through the freezing temperatures that are set to break records, Australia is battling with road-melting heat.

Storm Grayson raged across the Northeast of the US coast last week, wreaking havoc and leaving an unwanted frozen trail of destruction that has claimed 18 lives.

“To have snow in New York was an absolute dream,” Emily Joyce, campaign manager at Study International told Travel Wire Asia after a recent weekend visit to the Big Apple.

“Friday and Saturday the temperatures dropped to around -13 degrees Fahrenheit [-25 Celsius] so I was layering up with two pairs of tights under my jeans, a number of jumpers and a scarf covering most of my face. I even had heat pads in my socks and gloves. I don’t think you would be able to face the weather without it,” she said.

The Midwest is in for a blizzardy-battering this week too with harsh snow flurries expected to pummel eastern Colorado, Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa, North Dakota and Minnesota as the sun sets on Wednesday night.

Australia’s weather, however, is featuring on the other end of the thermometer and cor blimey, it is sweltering down there. Temperatures have reached the hottest on record since 1939 when Penrith became the hottest place on earth for the day.

The temperatures are causing roads to melt and forest fires to spark up with little warning. With the sun blazing down, the glistening ocean becomes a haven for sticky beach-goers, but lifeguards are urging swimmers to stay in the shallows, as at least three people have already been rushed to hospital after getting swept up in dangerous rip tides.

In both of the extreme weather conditions, it is essential to stay safe, or risk getting heat stroke or frostbite.

In Australia’s blazing sun, wear factor 50, and top up as frequently as you can, adorn a hat else expect your brain to quite literally boil, and avoid heading into the bush as fires can start and spread quicker than you can run.

If you find yourself in the grips of the arctic blast in New York, then take a leaf from Emily’s book. Layer up, buy reusable hand warmers, let people know where you’re going and plan your route.