Earth Watch Report - Extreme Temperatures
Warsaw zoo attendant Piotr Trochim sprays a rhinoceros with water to help it fight rare, extreme heat reaching 38 degrees Celsius (100.4 Fahrenheit) in Warsaw, Poland, on Thursday, Aug. 8, 2013, the year’s hottest day in Poland. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)/AP
|Highest level heatwave alert has been issued in Hungary, when the temperature is higher than 27 degrees Celsius (80 F) will be the next few days. The expected maximum temperature is 40-41 degrees Celsius (104-105 F). Due to the high temperature water shortages have emerged in smaller settlements.|
|Updated:||Friday, 09 August, 2013 at 13:32 UTC|
|Thousands of Roma have been queueing in a Hungarian town for water during a record heatwave after their mayor shut down many of the public pumps on which the impoverished community depends. With temperatures peaking at 40C (104 Fahrenheit) for several days, the Hungarian government intervened on Wednesday, ordering Mayor Pal Furjes to restore full water supplies to slums in the northeastern town of Ozd where the Roma live.|
Hungarian Roma queue for water in heatwave after pumps shut down
Roma man cools himself at the impoverished outskirts of Ozd (Laszlo Balogh Reuters, / August 7, 2013)
OZD, Hungary (Reuters) – Thousands of Roma have been queueing in a Hungarian town for water during a record heatwave after their mayor shut down many of the public pumps on which the impoverished community depends.
With temperatures peaking at 40C (104 Fahrenheit) for several days, the Hungarian government intervened on Wednesday, ordering Mayor Pal Furjes to restore full water supplies to slums in the northeastern town of Ozd where the Roma live.
Local Roma expressed sarcastic disgust about the mayor’s decision, which they said had been made without any warning. “I can fill this bucket up with my own spit before this trickle does,” said Gyorgy Kiss as he stood at a pump that remained open but had little water pressure.
“We thank the mayor very much. Next time he should shut down our air supply, too,” said Kiss, a father of five sons.
Roma suffer discrimination and persecution across much of Europe. On Tuesday, a Hungarian court jailed four neo-Nazis for killing Roma families in a spree of racist violence in 2008 and 2009 that shocked the country and led to accusations that police had failed to protect the minority.
Roma often live in miserable conditions without power or mains water. This forces them to trek to public pumps with buckets to collect water for washing and cooking.
However, Ozd’s municipal government closed more than half the town’s pumps and restricted pressure to others, accusing local people of abusing the free supply by spraying water around. This had left the town with a 12 million forint ($53,400) annual bill it cannot afford, it said.
Temperature records broken in Austria and Hungary
VIENNA — Temperatures have hit all-time highs in Austria and neighboring Hungary as a stubborn heat wave nears the end of its second week.
Thursday’s 40.5 degrees Celsius (105 degrees Fahrenheit Thursday eclipsed the previous record of 39.9 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) set just five days before.
In Hungary, temperatures were fractionally lower at 40 C Thursday. Officials there have issued a heat warning, while some government ministries have relaxed dress codes. For men, that means ties and jackets can be left at home. For women, pantyhose is optional.