Severe Cold Wave Hits Southern India With Lowest Temperatures In More Than 100 Years

Cold wave claims 15 lives in Andhra Pradesh (Times of India, Jan. 17, 2012)

Cold wave claims 15 lives in southern India (New Kerala, Jan. 17, 2012):

NEW DELHI : At least fifteen people have died this week as a severe cold wave hits southern India, the Times of India reported on Tuesday. Some areas have registered the lowest temperatures in more than 100 years.

The deaths were reported in the districts of Karimnagar, Visakhapatnam, Guntur, Nalgonda and Warangal in the state of Andhra Pradesh. Most of the victims were elderly and homeless people, the newspaper quoted officials and locals as saying.

With temperatures as high as 41 degrees Celsius (105.8 degrees Fahrenheit) during the summer, the region is known for its tropical weather between March and June. At least 13 of the 23 districts in the state have this week recorded temperatures below 10 degrees Celsius (50 degrees Fahrenheit).

The intensity of the cold has surprised residents as deaths due to cold are unheard of in the southern state, the Times of India reported. Adilabad district recorded a temperature of just 4.2 degrees Celsius (39.56 degrees Fahrenheit), the lowest temperature in more than 100 years.

The coastal district of Srikakulam recorded a temperature of 9 degrees Celsius (48.2 degrees Fahrenheit), the lowest in decades. The coastal city of Visakhapatnam registered a temperature of 11.2 degrees Celsius (52.16 degrees Fahrenheit), the lowest in 50 years, the report said.

According to weather officials, upper air circulation over the states of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh and cold winds blowing from the Himalayas have brought down the temperature drastically. They said the cold weather is likely to continue until Thursday morning.

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