Heat wave kills 19 in Odisha

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Bhubaneswar: A blistering heat wave Saturday swept across Odisha with the state recording a new high temperature of 46.7 degrees Celsius, as officials confirmed nine deaths, mostly this month, due to sun stroke. With these deaths, the toll due to the heat wave rose to 19 this summer.

The heat wave which struck the state also intensified further with the district headquarters town of Sambalpur, about 320 km from here, recording a high temperature of 46.7 degrees Celsius for the second day Saturday. This town recorded the same temperature Friday.

“It was the state’s highest temperature of this summer” S.C. Sahu, director of the Bhubaneswar Meteorological Centre, told IANS.

While one person died in Cuttack district, Mayurbhanj and Sundergarh districts reported four deaths each, a senior official of the state’s disaster management department told IANS regarding the latest casualties adding that most of these deaths have occurred this month.

Two more towns Hirakud and Sonepur also recorded a high temperature of 46.2 degrees Celsius each Saturday, while the industrial Jharusuguda town recorded a maximum temperature of 46 degrees.

Many places in the western parts of the state have been witnessing very high temperatures of over 45 degrees Celsius over the past few days.

The present condition is likely to prevail in the region, although the coastal belt may see some cloud formation and may witness a variation of temperature, Sahu said.

The interior and western parts of the state are likely to experience high temperatures of either 45 degrees Celsius or more, he added.

Roads wore a deserted look in many villages and towns, as people preferred to stay indoors. The frequent unscheduled power cuts in many places, including at the state capital Bhubaneswar, only compounded their plight.

The cities and towns in the state have also been facing acute water shortages, making the situation worse for the residents.