93F! Roads melt ... and it may be hottest since ’76 to­day

Daily Mail - - News - By Vanessa Allen

ROADS melted and rail­ways buck­led as Bri­tain swel­tered in the heat­wave yes­ter­day – with fore­cast­ers warn­ing it will be hot­ter in some areas to­day.

Tem­per­a­tures could hit 93F (34C) in London, mak­ing it the hottest June day since 1976 and hot­ter than parts of the Sa­hara.

The weather has claimed at least two lives. On Mon­day 16-year- old Paul Law­son drowned in a reser­voir in Rochdale and the body of an el­derly woman was pulled from the sea at East Wit­ter­ing, West Sus­sex.

The five-day heat­wave is ex­pected to end in the Mid­lands and the North, with thun­der­storms, tor­ren­tial rain and even hail. Some places could see up to 1.6in of rain­fall in one hour, with the risk of lo­calised flood­ing. But the South will con­tinue to swel­ter, with warn­ings of fur­ther dis­rup­tion to trans­port – although tem­per­a­tures are not ex­pected to ap­proach the June record of 96.1F (35.6C) in Southamp­ton in 1976.

How­ever, it is fore­cast to be the fifth con­sec­u­tive day that tem­per­a­tures have re­mained above 86F (30C), which has not hap­pened in June since 1995.

Yes­ter­day as the heat peaked at 88.3F (31.3C) in Wis­ley, Sur­rey, tracks were re­ported to have buck­led in Streatham, South London, and in Bris­tol.

Net­work Rail said sev­eral speed re­stric­tions were in place be­cause of the hot weather.

As road sur­faces be­gan to melt, grit­ting lor­ries were de­ployed in Nor­folk and Cam­bridgeshir­e and po­lice warned driv­ers to take care. At New­ton, Cam­bridgeshir­e, ser­vice sta­tion worker Agnes Owen said the melted tar­mac ‘sounded like cars were driv­ing through wa­ter’.

She added: ‘The tyres were lit­er­ally rip­ping the tar­mac off the road. It’s quite dan­ger­ous.’

Gatwick Air­port tweeted it was spray­ing its run­way with wa­ter to keep it cool. A pave­ment melted in Castle­field, Manch­ester, where a passer-by wrote ‘hot’ in the sur­face. Air pol­lu­tion lev­els are also ex­pected to rise to­day but cooler, fresher con­di­tions are ex­pected to­mor­row, with night-time tem­per­a­tures also ex­pected to dip.

Po­lice said the high tem­per­a­tures have led to a surge of 999 calls linked to al­co­hol con­sump­tion and anti-so­cial be­hav­iour.

West Mid­lands Po­lice said they took more emer­gency calls on both Satur­day and Sun­day than on New Year’s Eve.

Chief In­spec­tor Gareth Ma­son said: ‘More peo­ple tend to spend time out­side, re­sult­ing in more anti- so­cial be­hav­iour re­ports. Al­co­hol in­takes in­crease and tem­pers can fray more eas­ily.’

Po­lice and coast­guards have renewed warn­ings about the dan­gers of ‘tomb­ston­ing’ – leap­ing from height into the wa­ter – af­ter teenagers were pho­tographed jump­ing off cliffs and bridges. And mo­torists have been ad­vised to ap­ply sun­screen while driv­ing as most car win­dows of­fer no pro­tec­tion against ul­tra vi­o­let light.

Pub­lic Health Eng­land warned that death rates typ­i­cally rise when tem­per­a­tures ex­ceed 77F (25C), with the vul­ner­a­ble and the el­derly most at risk.

Di­a­betes UK warned di­a­bet­ics that high tem­per­a­tures could af­fect their con­di­tion, and al­lergy char­i­ties warned suf­fer­ers with breath­ing dif­fi­cul­ties such as asthma to take care.

Unions have urged em­ploy­ers to al­low staff to re­lax dress codes, while par­ents have crit­i­cised schools af­ter chil­dren were sent home for not wear­ing blaz­ers de­spite the heat.

Molten high­way: The B1093 in Cam­bridgeshir­e yes­ter­day

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