There seemed to be no respite from the heat wave conditions that have been continuing for the past two weeks at most of the places in Andhra Pradesh.
There was no significant drop in the temperatures at most places despite the arrival of the Southwest monsoon a week ago. The continuing heat wave conditions in many districts led to the authorities declare closure of the schools on Wednesday and Thursday also.
There was, however, a slight drop in temperatures in the city on Wednesday compared to Tuesday. Visakhapatnam Airport recorded a maximum temperature of 39.8 degrees Celsius (as against 42 degrees on Tuesday) and Waltair recorded 33.5 degrees (as against 34.8 on Tuesday).
A total of 18 deaths due to heat wave were confirmed in Visakhapatnam district and the ex gratia of Rs.1 lakh each was released to the family members of nine of the victims and the amount for the remaining would be released soon, according to District Revenue Officer M. Venkateswara Rao.
There was some respite from the heat wave in Srikakulam also. The temperature was 40 degrees on Tuesday. Schools functioned normally as no holiday was declared in the district. The death toll has been put at 38 but the number could, however, be much higher.
Heat wave conditions continued in Vizianagaram on Wednesday also with temperatures hovering around 40 degrees. A holiday was declared for schools. The death toll has been put at 127.
A holiday was declared on Wednesday in East Godavari district and the heat wave continued as temperatures hovered around 41 degrees. A two-day holiday was declared for schools and anganwadis in West Godavari district. The toll in the district has been put at 5.
There was no respite from the heat wave in Guntur district as high temperatures continued. The rainfall for June was 94 per cent below the normal hitting farm operations badly. Holidays were declared for schools for two days and the death toll was 79, according to unofficial estimates.
The temperatures hovered around 42 degrees in Prakasam district but schools functioned normally.
Schools functioned normally in Chittoor and Nellore districts as temperatures were normal.