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Mercury hits 36 as heat wave sweeps Beijing

(Xinhua)

09:01, July 03, 2012

BEIJING, July 2 (Xinhua) -- This year's second heat wave continued to sweep Beijing Monday, as the high temperature hovered around 36 degrees Celsius.

The municipal weather bureau issued an alert at 10:45 a.m., warning citizens to beware of sunstroke.

It said the heat would continue on Tuesday.

The heat wave began Sunday, following a week of rain. On Sunday, the high temperature hit 35.3 degrees Celsius and humidity stood at 70 to 80 percent, according to the bureau.

"It was a typical sauna-like midsummer day in Beijing," said Chen Mali, a resident in downtown Xicheng district.

By 11 a.m. Monday, the mercury had hit 33 degrees Celsius in the downtown areas.

"Today the sunlight is so dazzling that you feel dizzy after standing in the sun for a while," said Chen. "But personally, I think it's better than the sauna-like weather."

A doggerel mocking the heat wave has gone viral almost overnight: if you have suddenly lost track of your pals in the capital, check whether they have died in the broiling heat.

The weather bureau forecasted that the high temperature will continue to hover at 35 on Tuesday, but a thundershower is expected to cool off the city on Wednesday.

This year's first heat wave attacked Beijing in mid-June, when the high temperature hit 37 degrees Celsius.

The city's average daytime temperature in July is around 31 degrees Celsius, said Ai Wanxiu, a specialist with the China Meteorological Administration.

Beijing's highest daytime temperature in recent memory was reported in 1999, when the high hit 42 degrees Celsius.

Besides Beijing, southeastern and northwestern China will also see scorching temperatures Tuesday, with temperatures exceeding 35 degrees Celsius, according to the National Meteorological Center.

The center issued a high temperature alert at 6 p.m. Monday, as the temperature is expected to reach 38 degrees Celsius in Hebei, Jiangxi, Zhejiang and Fujian provinces on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, heavy rain will sweep southwest and central China in the next three days, while thunderstorms are forecasted for regions in the northeast, the China Meteorological Administration said.

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