A Record-Breaking Heatwave Is Scorching Australia

2 minute read

For five consecutive days, a record-breaking heatwave has been scorching all eight states of Australia, with temperatures in some areas soaring to 120 F, the Guardian reports.

The Bureau of Meteorology said several areas will exceed 107.6 F on Friday. In the capital, Canberra, the mercury is expected to top 104 for the fourth day in a row, the longest lasting heatwave there since the record began in 1939.

In a tweet, the Bureau said Friday marks the peak of the extreme heat.

On Thursday, temperatures of 113 F descended on many parts of central Australia and western New South Wales (NSW).

The day before, nine records were broken in NSW. One outback town, called Whitecliff, recorded temperatures of nearly 119 F.

The government issued an alert earlier this week warning Australians to stay indoors and remain hydrated. Extreme heat poses a danger to the young, elderly and those with breathing conditions.

“We’re expecting temperatures over 40 degrees Celsius for much of the state until Saturday, so once again I’d encourage everyone to take the risk of heat related illness seriously,” said Richard Broome, Director of Environmental Health. “Signs of heat-related illness include dizziness, tiredness, irritability, thirst, fainting, muscle pains or cramps, headache, changes in skin color, rapid pulse, shallow breathing, vomiting and confusion.”

Temperatures in southern and central Australia are expected to taper over the weekend, but heat will continue to rage over central eastern Australia, according to the Bureau of Meteorology’s forecast.

Australia is in the grip of a severe, seven year drought. This is the second heatwave to hit Down Under in less than a month. After Christmas, a heatwave hit sparked bushfire warnings.

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