USA, Europe grill out; Asia flooded


Millions of people in the USA, Europe and Asia have recently had to endure record temperatures, which in some of these areas also resulted in devastating rain at the cost of human lives.

The US National Weather Service has warned that a heat wave stretching from California to Texas will reach a peak on Sunday with temperatures between 6 °C and 12 °C higher than usual.

Arizona’s capital, Phoenix, recorded 43 °C on Friday, which would rise to 46 °C by Sunday.

California’s Death Valley, one of the hottest places on earth, will probably also reach a new peak on Sunday when the mercury rises to 54 °C.

The Las Vegas Weather Service also warned that this heat wave is not like the normal high temperatures that are unique to the desert climate.

“It is a dangerous mindset (to underestimate the temperatures). This heat wave is not typical like desert heat.”

Authorities advised people to avoid outdoor activities during the day and to be careful of dehydration.

Meanwhile, Europe is also facing record temperatures. The minister of health in Italy has already issued a warning for 16 areas in the country, including Rome, Bologna and Florence.

The weather center warned Italians to prepare for “the most intense heatwave of the summer” and also one of the hottest summers on record.

The mercury is likely to rise to 40 °C in Rome by Monday and to 43 °C on Tuesday. These temperatures will completely shatter the record of 40.5 °C set in August 2007 in the country.

The islands of Sicily and Sardinia will also experience high temperatures of around 48 °C.

The European Space Agency has warned that these may be “the hottest temperatures ever recorded in Europe”.

The Acropolis in Athens, one of Greece’s top tourist attractions, was closed for the third consecutive day during the hottest hours of the day on Sunday.

In France, the high temperatures and resulting drought pose a threat to the farming industry. In the past month, the second hottest temperatures on record were recorded in France. The national weather agency has also warned that several areas can expect a heat wave on Tuesday.

There is also little respite ahead for Spain after its meteorological agency warned that a new heat wave will cause temperatures to reach 40 °C from Monday to Wednesday. The Canary Islands and the southern Andalusia region will be largely affected by this heat wave.

Devastating rain

Devastating rain hit northern Japan on Sunday and it has already caused severe damage.

A man was found dead in a flooded car, a week after seven people died in similar weather in the southwest of the country.

Parts of eastern Japan are expected to reach temperatures of 39 °C on Sunday and Monday. The country’s meteorological agency warns that the coming temperatures will shatter previous records.

In South Korea, rescue workers scrambled to reach people trapped in a flooded tunnel. The heavy rain that fell on the country in the last four days resulted in several floods and landslides. At least 33 people have already died and ten are still missing.

This country is currently deep into its summer rainy season and even more rain is predicted for Wednesday.

After people in the north of India had to endure sky-high temperatures, relentless rain has reportedly already claimed 90 human lives.

Flooding and landslides are common during India’s rainy season, but they seem to be becoming more frequent.

China issued several temperature warnings on Sunday, especially in the semi-desert region of Xinjiang, and the south of the Guangxi region which are expected to reach 40 °C and 45 °C respectively.

The meteorological service in Morocco has also predicted above average temperatures that could reach highs of 47 °C in some provinces. This has already raised major concerns about water shortages.

The European Union’s climate monitoring service said the world had one of its hottest Junes on record last month.