Record heatwave in Delhi surpasses 50 degrees Celsius, schools closed and infrastructure stressed – Click here to read more!

DELHI, India – The scorching temperatures in India’s capital territory of Delhi have shattered records, reaching near 50 degrees Celsius (122 degrees Fahrenheit) in some neighborhoods on Tuesday and Wednesday. The extreme heat wave has forced school closures, endangered outdoor workers, strained water supplies and infrastructure, and pushed the limits of human survival if sustained.

The blistering conditions are part of a broader heat wave sweeping across Southeast Asia, fueled by a combination of short-term weather patterns and long-term climate change trends caused by human activity. Over the past week, the heat wave has surpassed dangerous thresholds, posing a severe risk to public health.

In Delhi, the wet-bulb globe temperature – a measure of heat stress on the human body – climbed to 97 to 100 degrees (36 to 38 Celsius) on Tuesday, surpassing the level that researchers have identified as posing a risk to human survival if sustained. The extreme heat has had far-reaching impacts, disrupting daily life for residents and workers across the region.

Labor contractors like Amit Sah have faced challenges managing outdoor work in the sweltering conditions. Sah had to adjust work hours for his team of workers due to the unbearable heat, resulting in financial losses. The heatwave even affected the functioning of local consumer courts in the national capital, highlighting the widespread impact of the extreme weather.

The intense heat wave has forced the closure of schools in Bihar after students suffered from heat-related illnesses, prompting similar alerts in other regions of India. Workers like Ramnath Paswan, who rely on daily wages, have been compelled to work despite the record-breaking temperatures, underscoring the economic pressures faced by vulnerable populations.

Several cities in India recorded their highest-ever temperatures, including Rohtak and Fursatganj, pointing to the severity of the heat wave gripping the region. While initial reports suggested that Delhi had surpassed 50 degrees Celsius for the first time, further analysis revealed discrepancies in temperature readings, indicating the need for accurate data collection amid extreme weather events.

Although thunderstorms provided temporary relief in parts of Delhi, the heat wave persisted, prompting authorities to issue warnings and urge residents to take precautions. The India Meteorological Department forecasted a gradual reduction in heat wave conditions over the coming days, as meteorological factors like rainfall and wind patterns are expected to change.

The record heat wave in India is part of a global trend, with regions like Southeast Asia, the Middle East, Mexico, and Florida experiencing exceptional May heat. The persistent high temperatures underscore the urgent need to address climate change and its impact on extreme weather events worldwide. Experts predict that factors like El Niño and warm ocean temperatures will continue to influence heat waves, emphasizing the importance of proactive measures to mitigate climate risks.