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Srinagar records hottest day in 25 years amid rising temperature

Srinagar faced its hottest day in 25 years at 35.6°C, triggering health advisories and weather warnings. Gulmarg also recorded its highest July temperature in 11 years at 25.7°C. The heatwave has caused water shortages.

By Ground report
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Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, had its hottest day in 25 years on Wednesday with temperatures reaching 35.6°C, 6.0°C above the normal average. This heatwave has raised concerns among residents and authorities, leading to health advisories and weather warnings.

The current temperature in Srinagar is the highest since July 9, 1999, when it hit 37.0°C. It's the 11th-highest maximum temperature recorded in the city during July. The record, set on July 10, 1946, is 38.3°C.

On Tuesday, Srinagar reached a temperature of 34.6°C, surpassing Kolkata's 31°C. This is the second-highest July temperature in the last decade, with the highest being 35°C on July 18, 2021.

The heatwave's impact extends beyond Srinagar. The ski resort of Gulmarg in north Kashmir's Baramulla district also recorded its highest July temperature in 11 years, with the mercury touching 25.7°C on Wednesday. This is the highest temperature recorded in Gulmarg since July 29, 2013, when it reached 27.0°C. The all-time highest temperature for Gulmarg was recorded on July 14, 1969, at 29.4°C.

The heat has led to challenges for residents. Many areas have water shortages, and there's a surge in demand for cooling appliances like air conditioners, fans, and coolers. Commuters are struggling with city traffic, hurrying to car AC service providers to ensure their vehicles are cool.

The health department has issued advisories urging people to stay hydrated, avoid strenuous outdoor activities during peak heat hours, and take necessary precautions against heat-related illnesses in response to the heatwave. The school education department has announced a 10-day summer vacation for schools in the Valley starting July 8.

Meteorologists are closely monitoring the situation. The weather department forecasts some relief starting Thursday, with intermittent light to moderate rain or thundershowers in many places. From July 5-6, there's a chance of intermittent moderate rainfall across much of Jammu and Kashmir, with heavy spells in a few locations.

Residents should prepare for more heat, as hot and humid conditions are expected to return from July 8 to 10. The weather department has warned of potential thunderstorms, lightning, flash floods, landslides, mudslides, and shooting stones in vulnerable areas during July 4-6.

This extreme weather event is a stark reminder of the growing impact of climate change on global weather patterns. Experts are analyzing if this temperature spike is an anomaly or part of a larger trend.

Authorities urge residents to stay informed about weather updates and follow safety guidelines as Srinagar grapples with an unprecedented heatwave. The situation underscores the need for comprehensive climate action and adaptation strategies to address challenges posed by extreme weather events.

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