Sunday 24 May 2015

48.8C - Heat wave kill 200+ in India

 "In one of his recent presentations, Professor Guy McPherson commented that when the worst effects of abrupt climate change set in most people will be dying of dehydration. Heat waves killing hundreds of people isn't new, but it will become a more frequent occurrence until it gets us all. Kirk Norring said pretty much the same thing commenting on another thread. This is the future happening in the present.

---Kevin Hester

In 3 days, heat wave kills 200 in Andhra, Telangana

23 May, 2015

HYDERABAD/VISAKHAPATNAM: More than 100 people were felled by a blazing heat wave on Friday alone in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh with the mercury hovering at 47 degrees Celsius at several places across the two states even as the death toll crossed 200 in the two states in the last three days.

Hospitals in Telangana reported a heavy rush of inpatients with symptoms of sunstroke even as the Andhra government kept emergency medical teams at standby in all districts. Officials issued warnings to people to not venture out during the day without guarding themselves against the sweltering heat.

As the temperature soared past the 45 degrees the India Meteorological Department upgraded the heat wave warning to "severe", and forecast at least three more scorching days in Adilabad, Nizamabad, Karimnagar, Medak, Warangal, Khammam, Rangareddy, Hyderabad, Nalgonda and Mahbubnagar districts of Telangana.

In Andhra, districts hit were East Godavari, West Godavari, Krishna, Guntur, Prakasam, Nellore, Chittoor, Kadapa and Kurnool. IMD officials feared the region would break its past record of maximum temperature - the highest day temperature ever recorded in AP and Telangana was 48.8 degree in Vijayawada on May 11, 2002.

This is also the first time ever that so many people have died due to heat wave in such a short span in Telangana and AP - even when they were one entity. With the toll mounting by the day, Telangana and AP governments on Friday reviewed the situation and directed field level officials to take up a massive campaign to advise people on how to save themselves from the high temperatures.

The sun raged a shade higher in Telangana with the bulk of the sunstroke deaths reported there. While 66 people died in Telangana, 35 were killed in Andhra. Most of those dead were the elderly, women and young children. Hospitals even in small villages reported cases of sunstroke. The area hospital in Jangaon in Warangal district received two dozen patients with severe dehydration. About 200 people were admitted at MGM hospital in Warangal in the last two days.

YK Reddy, director in charge, IMD Hyderabad centre, said the day temperature will be five degree Celsius above the normal. "Many places have already registered five to seven degree Celsius above the normal level. People should avoid coming out of their homes after 10 am during severe heat wave condition," Reddy warned.

Disaster management special commissioner (Telangana) S Bhargavi admitted that this is for the first time in five years that such a high toll is reported during summer. Her AP counterpart P Tulasi Rani said data on sunstroke deaths is being collected from districts.

Nalgonda district was the worst hit in Telangana with 15 sunstroke deaths reports on Friday. The district-wise toll is: Nalgonda 15, Warangal and Khammam, 13, Karimnagar, 12, Mahbubnagar 7, Adilabad 3, Medak 2 and Hyderabad 1. In AP Prakasam district bore the brunt of the sun's fury with 11 deaths, followed by Krishna 7, Nellore 6, Srikakulam 4, Guntur and Kurnool 3, Vizianagaram 2 and Anantapur 1.

Lack of proper medical facilities in area hospitals and primary health care centres has only complicated the matters for the sunstroke patients. Power outages and lack of fans at many health centres caused untold suffering to the already dehydrated patients.

In Mahbubnagar district, which is known for its perennial drought, about 500 people reported at various hospitals with signs of sunstroke. There was no potable water at many of these centres.

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