Tag Archive | Delhi

Deadly Ebola Virus; 6 people suspected to have been exposed to Ebola Virus rushed to hospital in Delhi, India

Ebola Virus

Six passengers who arrived in Delhi from Liberia on Tuesday have been taken to the Ram Manohar Lohia hospital. These passengers are suspected to have been exposed to the Ebola virus.

The six people will be quarantined at the hospital, where a check up will be done. They were made to wear protective boots and masks while being taken to the hospital.

The Health Ministry has set up two medical teams at the Delhi airport to screen passengers. A total of 114 people are expected to arrive from Liberia in Delhi and Mumbai on Tuesday.

Earlier, a 32-year-old man who recently arrived from Lagos in Nigeria, in Mumbai, had tested negative for the Ebola virus.

The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has killed more than 1,200 people since it began in December, 2013, the World Health Organisation has said.

Severe heatwave as temperature hits 42 degrees Celsius in Delhi, India

Heatwave Alert

Delhiites on Friday suffered the double whammy of sweltering heat and high humidity, making it one of the most oppressive days of this summer. The mercury touched 42 degrees celsius, seven notches above normal, making the conditions qualify as a ‘severe heat wave’. This is only the sixth year since 1969 when the maximum has touched 42 degrees in July.
 
Palam was even hotter at 44 degrees celsius. And, the weekend may be worse, with the Met office saying the heat is likely to intensify. Rain is expected only by the middle of next week although Sunday evening may turn cloudy.
 
The severe heat is a direct consequence of rains going missing in northwest India. Monsoon broke over the capital on July 3 and after a brief presence, vanished without a sign. Delhi has recorded just 12.1mm rain so far month against a normal of 56.5mm for this period. “There has been an absence of low pressure systems over Bay of Bengal that would feed the southwest Monsoon. Several parts of the northwest India are reeling under a heatwave and have recorded below normal rain,” said a Met official.
 
A Met official said heat waves in July, such as the one being currently witnessed, usually occur in rainfall deficit years.
 
“With clear skies and no rain, temperature has been rising steadily and Delhi has been in the grip of a heatwave in the past couple of days,” said sources. The Indian Meteorological Department said heat wave to severe heatwave conditions have been prevailing over parts of east Rajasthan, south Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Delhi while heat wave conditions have been recorded in parts of west Rajasthan, northwest Uttar Pradesh and Punjab.
M Duraisamy of the Delhi’s Regional Meteorological Centre said heatwave conditions would continue over parts of Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Haryana and Delhi till July 13.
 
“Monsoon activity is shifting towards central India and some parts of the northwest plains by the middle of the next week. It will be active over the southern peninsula till Tuesday or Wednesday and active along the west coast and foothills of the Himalayas and many parts of east and northeast India on several days during the week. However, monsoon activity will weaken over the western parts of the country for the next two weeks,” said B P Yadav, director, IMD.
The system has been quite sluggish over the country in the past week, with the exception of east and northeast India where the monsoon was near normal. From June 1, when monsoon is to officially break over Kerala, to July 11, the country has witnessed a rain deficit of 43%. Central India has been the worst affected with a deficit of 63% while the shortfall in northwest India stand at a high 46%.

Record-Breaking 118°F Heat Grips India, Causing Blackouts And Riots

Heatwave Alert

The usually chaotic streets of Delhi have been nearly deserted for days and the city’s markets have been eerily quiet. While the city is no stranger to warm weather, temperatures hovering around 115°F have kept even the heartiest sheltering indoors. On Sunday, a 63-year-old heat record melted away in a 118°F blaze.

“Every day, the heat seems to be getting more intense and is not bearable anymore. I have taken a week-long leave from work,” Amar Luthra, a young professional, told NDTV, adding that he planned to head to the hills as he could no longer bear to commute on his motorcycle.

The sweltering heat has led to a dramatic surge in demand for electricity in the city of over 22 million causing widespread blackouts. While most people in Delhi are accustomed to sudden power cuts, the current heatwave makes such cuts not just annoying, but dangerous.

 

The government is now cutting power to shopping malls and switching off street lights in an attempt to reduce the strain on the grid. Government officials will also get their AC cut over the next few days.

While the heat on its own can be deadly, it also bakes the polluted air in the city, leading to dangerous spikes in ground level ozone. Analysis of real-time air quality data from the Delhi Pollution Control Committee (DPCC) monitoring stations from January to early June have recorded the rapid build-up of ozone as summer heat has intensified. In the week before the current heat wave set in, the average ozone level across the stations was 73 micrograms per cubic meter on June 1. That figure doubled by June 5, soaring past levels considered safe. There are around 8 million vehicles in Delhi that contribute to the toxic soup of chemicals that can cook into ozone.

 

In the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, similarly sweltering weather has also caused widespread blackouts and water shortages as pumps shut down. Electricity demand in the state rose to 11,000 megawatts, far beyond the 8,000-megawatt capacity of the grid. Less than half of the state’s 200 million people have access to electricity under normal circumstances, but the recent power outages set tempers ablaze. Riots broke out across the state over the weekend. Electricity substations were torched and power company officials taken hostage.

While even extremely hot weather in India may not seem out of place to some, India isn’t the only country enduring an early heatwave this year.

Central Europe has been baking in unseasonable heat since last week. Berlin has seen temperatures over 90°F since Sunday, more than 20 degrees hotter than normal. Eastern France and southern Germany have also been flirting with 100°F for days. Switzerland, best known for its snowy alps, has been enduring temperatures in the mid 90s all week.

And in Japan, 4 people died last week and at least 1,637 people were hospitalized as temperatures in some areas topped out at 99°F. Japan’s aging population makes the country especially vulnerable to the public health effects of extreme heat.

In the U.S. more people die from extreme heat than any other weather-related cause. Heat waves are expected to increase in intensity and frequency as humans emit more heat-trapping greenhouse gases and the climate changes.