India's heat wave is threatening to cause blackouts and perhaps fatalities.
Temperatures are rising across the nation this week, prompting heat wave warnings and raising the possibility of blackouts, potentially exposing millions of people to fatal heat exhaustion.
In Baripada, Odisha, the high temperature on Monday topped 44°C and was still 5°C above average in several places. Heat wave warnings were issued by the India Meteorological Department (IMD) for a number of areas, including Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Bihar, and Odisha.
India is preparing for what might be an unusually hot summer. After the subcontinent had a brutal heat wave in 2022 that resulted in significant human suffering and had an impact on the world's wheat supplies, there is more attention being paid to the weather this year. As more people turn up their air conditioners and strain the infrastructure, there is also worry about power outages.
Humidity and heat together may be extremely harmful or even fatal. The bulk of the 1.4 billion people who call this nation home labour outdoors, frequently uncovered. Each year during the summer, a great number of rickshaw pullers, construction workers, and hawkers pass away from the heat. The world's most severe heat-related labour losses occur in India.
After attending a government-sponsored event in Navi Mumbai on Sunday, where they were exposed to the sweltering sun for hours, 13 individuals died of heat stroke and dozens more required medical attention.
The officials have urged individuals to take good care of their health by drinking plenty of water. The weather office advised against overheating, wearing cotton clothing that was lightweight and loose, and covering one's head.
In addition, West Bengal has mandated that all educational institutions remain closed this week in order to protect kids from the intense heat. School hours have been cut in various other states.