Excessive warmth in China drives cities’ residents to hunt refuge underground

Cities throughout China have opened their air raid shelters to supply residents reduction from the warmth as unusually excessive temperatures throughout components of the nation begins claiming lives.

Northern China is experiencing strings of days with record-high temperatures, compounded by drought. Earlier this week, Beijing reported greater than 9 straight days with temperatures exceeding 35 C, in keeping with the Nationwide Local weather Middle — a streak unseen since 1961.

Cities together with Hangzhou on China’s east coast, Wuhan within the centre of the nation, and Shijiazhuang in Hebei province neighbouring Beijing over the previous week introduced opening their air raid shelters to residents in search of to flee the warmth.

Authorities have issued well being alerts and, within the capital and elsewhere, suspended out of doors work.

To date, two deaths in Beijing have been attributed to the scorching warmth. Well being authorities mentioned a tour information collapsed and died of warmth stroke on Sunday whereas giving a tour of the Summer season Palace — an enormous, 18th century imperial backyard. Final month, a lady in Beijing additionally died from a warmth stroke.

Warmth-related deaths

Well being authorities in Shaoxing, a metropolis neighbouring Hangzhou, mentioned Thursday they’ve recorded deaths attributable to the warmth, however didn’t specify any particulars.

Chinese language cities equivalent to Chongqing, a southwestern metropolis identified for its torrid summers, have for years used their air raid tunnels as public cooling centres.

Quite a few Chinese language cities began constructing air raid shelters through the Japanese invasion starting in 1937. The constructing marketing campaign resumed within the late Fifties, when China’s relationship with the Soviet Union soured and Beijing feared a nuclear assault.

The shelters at the moment are usually outfitted with seating areas and provide entry to water, refreshments, warmth stroke drugs, and in some instances facilities equivalent to Wi-Fi, TV units and desk tennis gear.

Climate authorities warned Thursday about extreme drought in northern China threatening crops and stressing overworked electrical grids. In the meantime, in south China, heavy flooding has displaced hundreds of individuals over the previous few weeks.

Earth’s common temperature set a brand new unofficial report excessive Thursday, the third such milestone in every week that already rated as the most popular on report.