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Britain warns of travel disruptions during heatwave

Britain warns of travel disruptions during heatwave

LONDON, England: The UK government held an emergency meeting to prepare for record high temperatures after the Met Office issued its first-ever red warning for extreme heat this week.

Britain’s Met Office said in a statement that a warning would cover parts of England this week, when temperatures could reach 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) for the first time.

The UK’s record high temperature in 2019 was 38.7 degrees Celsius (101.7 degrees Fahrenheit).

After chairing the meeting, Cabinet Minister Keith Malthouse warned that transport services would be significantly affected.

“For example, the heat will affect the tracks, so trains will have to run slower. There may be fewer services. People need to be alert to avoid disruption. If they don’t have to travel, it could be a time to work from home,” he told the BBC.

Rail passengers and London Underground users have also been advised not to travel for the start of the week, unless absolutely necessary.

Britain is not used to high temperatures and only a few homes, flats, schools and small businesses have air conditioning.

Meanwhile, London Mayor Sadiq Khan met with representatives of the National Health Service, police, fire and other emergency services to review heat response plans.

The coming heatwave and a surge in COVID-19 infections have created a nightmare for health workers, said Dr Claire Bronze, a consultant in emergency medicine in London.

“A lot of hospital buildings are very old, especially in London, and a lot of them don’t have air conditioning and windows that don’t open, so it’s very hot,” she added, according to the Associated Press.

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