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Saturday Apr 11 2020

Locked down due to coronavirus, Karachi residents brace for heatwave starting today


KARACHI: Residents of Karachi will have to bear the coronavirus lockdown in searing heat, with Meteorological Department Director Sardar Sarfaraz forecasting a two-day heatwave starting Saturday for the port city.

The city has been under strict lockdown orders since March due to the coronavirus pandemic.

According to the Met department, temperatures will remain high for the next two days, shooting up to 40 degrees Celsius.

“The sea breeze will discontinue during the day time,” the official said, depriving the city's residents of their cooling effect.

As of Saturday, the weather department said Karachi’s day-time temperature had risen to 39.3C.

The ratio of humidity in air is 12%, added the Met department. 

The heatwave warning came as the city recorded more than 1,300 coronavirus cases with 28 deaths. 

It bears mentioning that despite speculation that heat and high temperature kill the virus and/or strip it of its potency, there is no definite conclusion on the matter as the number of cases have continued to mount in even hotter places.

Last year, Karachi witnessed a series of heatwaves which saw residents avoiding venturing out during afternoon hours and remaining indoors.

Related: 10 tips to beat the heat

The city has been facing consecutive heatwaves since the past two years in particular. 

In June 2015, about 1,200 people had died in southern Pakistan during a heatwave, with nearly two-thirds of the victims homeless people.