Surviving the sweltering heatwave sweeping over India
WHILE some parts in Asia-Pacific, such as Australia and New Zealand, are just beginning to enjoy a cooling winter, about 8,000 kilometers away in India, temperatures are soaring.
The humid summer season has begun to sweep across the South Asian country with temperatures crossing 45 Celsius in many parts of the country.
Parts of India, such as Churu in the northern state of Rajasthan, are reeling as the deadly heatwave soared to 50.8 Celsius over the weekend. Other parts of Rajasthan hit a temperature high of 49.8 Celsius and cities in Madhya Pradesh were not far behind with a scorching temperature of 47.7 Celsius.
It has put Rajasthan and the central state of Madhya Pradesh on alert for “severe heat wave conditions”, according to a BBC report. Both states often record some of the highest temperatures at the peak of summer.
And with temperatures climbing, some cities have reported acute water shortage. Here are the hottest cities recorded over the weekend:
- Churu (Rajasthan): 49.8 Celsius.
- Ganganagar (Rajasthan): 48.6 Celsius.
- Phalodi (Rajasthan): 48.2 Celsius.
- Bikaner (Rajasthan): 48.1 Celsius.
- Jaisalmer (Rajasthan): 47.8 Celsius.
- Nowgong (Madhya Pradesh): 47.7 Celsius.
- Narnaul (Haryana): 47.6 Celsius.
- Khajuraho (Madhya Pradesh): 47.5 Celsius.
As the summer heat in India intensifies, the hardest hit are those who have to keep working despite the blistering weather such as street vendors, traffic police, and rickshaw drivers.
“It’s really hot right now but what can we do? We still need to keep our business going. We need to be able to feed ourselves, so we have to stay open,” CNA quoted market trader Laxmi Jagdish as saying.
One casualty has already been reported due to the incredibly high temperatures.
So if you happen to be visiting India, particularly Rajasthan or Madhya Pradesh during this unrelenting time, you may want to take precautions as high temperatures can cause the body’s core temperature to rise, leading to your body breaking down.
And if you stay out in the sun for too long, heat-related illness, dehydration, and heat stroke are highly likely outcomes. Signs of heat-related illness include dizziness, tiredness, irritability, thirst, fainting, muscle pains or cramps, headache, changes in skin color, rapid pulse, shallow breathing, vomiting, and confusion.
So remember to drink lots of water, slap on heaps of sun protection, bring an umbrella with you when you are out and about, and stay indoors as much as possible.
While the heatwave will continue as the flow of hot winds from the northwest direction continue to pass over Rajasthan, in north India, temperatures are expected to climb down to 43 Celsius for a while.