Finding Ways to Stay Cool Amid India’s Recent Deadly Heat Wave


With today’s technological advances, it’s difficult to understand how a country can suffer such tragic losses when it comes to the heat. Unfortunately, those who are affected most are the homeless and laborers who are unable to seek shelter. Although the upcoming monsoon season may bring about some much needed relief, finding ways to stay cool has become a priority for many.

Silent Killer

Heat is a silent killer and one of the largest causes of weather related fatalities. The late May heat wave to hit India has claimed close to 2,000 lives already. In addition to the blistering temperatures to blame for heat stroke, farmers are facing an agrarian crisis, because the abhorrent weather conditions are harming their crops. In areas such as New Delhi, the temperatures exceeded 113, causing their roads to melt. Odisha saw the mercury spike to 117. This is just five degrees under the hottest temperature ever recorded in the history of India. Coastal regions such as Mumbai were delivered twice the blow of oppressive humidity levels and blistering heat. During the height of the heat wave, temperature indexes at night struggled to fall lower than 100. While India typically experiences warmer temperatures during the month of May, the heat wave is lasting longer than most expected, with not much relief in sight.


Cooling off in New Delhi

Cooling off in areas such as Delhi have proven extremely difficult. While many of the residents in the community are fortunate to have air conditioning to help combat the heat, the additional energy used to cool off residences is knocking out power. Officials have warned the public to keep their heads covered, stay out of the sun and hydrate with plenty of water. However, the poverty stricken don’t have the monetary means to take it easy during these difficult times. To stop working is to go without food and water. That’s why the homeless, construction workers and individuals who work outdoors are most affected by the extreme heat. No one it seems is spared from the high temperatures. At the Kamla Nehru Zoological Garden, the animals could be seen cooling off in pools. In addition to the homeless and laborers, elderly people and children are also most vulnerable to heat stroke and dehydration. People who die as a result of the high temperatures don’t always perish from heatstroke. They can also die from conditions exacerbated from the heat such as heart attacks, dehydration or kidney failure. Volunteers have also tried to do their part to help assuage the heat for people by passing out raw onions and salted buttermilk. Both items are thought to be beneficial when it comes to hydration. Administrators have also postponed school, leaving children with the opportunity to cool off in pools, rivers and water basins.

Place Blame on the Recent Heat Surge

Climate experts are blaming the surge of hot air from Pakistan. This type of heat bomb has delayed the monsoon season and overtaken the cooler air from getting into the area. Latest monsoon predictions also show El Nino to be in place, which would cause India to experience a warmer and dryer season ahead. Elevated greenhouse emittance also played a key role in climate change. While India usually witnesses a warm season, the gasses emitted into the air could make it especially brutal as the years go by. Experts see more frequent and longer in duration waves of heat throughout the upcoming decades in the region. Unless we get a handle on carbon emissions, extreme temperatures that normally happen every 15 to 20 years could become a more frequent occurrence.


Article Submitted By community Writer

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