Thursday, February 22, 2024

Chinese city residents seek respite from scorching heat

The heatwave prompted residents to seek temporary respite in underground facilities.

• August 19, 2022
Chinese heatwave
Image used to Illustrate Chinese heatwave [Photo Credit:NDTV]

Since July, southwest China’s Chongqing Municipality has been scorched by ceaseless sweltering days, with more than 33 days reporting temperatures above 35 degrees Celsius.

The heatwave prompted residents to seek temporary respite in underground facilities.

At around 6:00 p.m., many gathered at the rest area inside the Huahuiyuan subway station on Chongqing’s Line 6.

With seats, first-aid medicine and an instant water dispenser on offer, residents could enjoy the comfort of shelter and air-conditioning, escaping their hot summer with books and board games.

The terminal station of Line 6 is located in the Beibei District, which has recently suffered the worst of the muggy heat.

On Thursday, Beibei District notched up a new record high temperature of 45 degrees Celsius at 4:00 p.m., ranking first among China’s 2,418 national meteorological observation stations during the same period.

By that time, over 30 districts and counties in Chongqing had reported temperatures above 40 degrees Celsius.

On Thursday, Chongqing issued a red alert for high temperatures, the most severe warning in the country’s four-tier weather warning system.

According to the National Climate Centre, the comprehensive intensity of the regional heatwaves that have hit China since June 13 is the strongest since 1961, the year when the country started to keep complete meteorological records.

To cope with this year’s unprecedented piping-hot weather, 99 subway stations in Chongqing’s major urban districts have provided similar facilities and services for locals to help beat the heat, according to He Feiying, a staffer, Chongqing Rail Transit (Group) Co., Ltd.

Apart from utilising public services, many urbanites also fled to nearby summer resorts like the Black Mountain Valley in Chongqing’s Wansheng economic development zone, one of the closest summer retreats to downtown Chongqing.

The scenic area has become a popular go-to place as it only takes a two-hour drive from downtown Chongqing to reach this destination.

According to Chongqing’s municipal commission of culture and tourism, there are over 200 cultural and tourism activities on offer across the city this summer.

Whereas more than 70 tourism routes were recommended for locals keen to exchange the stifling heat for a cooler summer holiday experience. 


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