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11 dead, 5,600 sent to hospitals last week due to heatwave

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Was there a heat wave last week? Do people start dying when temps get to 33’?

5 ( +15 / -10 )

Every year. They just don't get it do they

14 ( +16 / -2 )

Next year with all the visitors. Hospitals better be ready.

16 ( +17 / -1 )

Guranteed to be the most uncomfortable Olympics in the history of the Games. Exactly a year from now we'll be rght in the middle of them. God save the athletes and spectators.

17 ( +19 / -2 )

Was on our way to Costco on Sunday and we passed by an elderly man who was being tended to by paramedics after passing out on the sidewalk. They had pulled him to the shade so I can only assume he passed out from the heat. Poor man, presumably just trying to get to the station.

It's too hot. Seriously. Even this afternoon they had high schoolers running out on the track, did nobody check the thermometer? It's only supposed to get hotter this week and I doubt anybody will cancel anything. So frustrating.

17 ( +17 / -0 )

Right, club activities must go on.

Until the first couple of students black out and are sent home.

18 ( +18 / -0 )

Drink plenty of water. I put an ice pack or packet of frozen peas inside my straw hat. Wet my head before leaving home. Ice back in a towel on the back of the neck is very good. You can pop into food stores for ice.

Motto for the season "Be cool, stay cool!"

6 ( +7 / -1 )

11 deaths and 5,664 hospitalized. Why such a high number? I wouldn't be surprised to see such many heat casualties in a desert country or a music festival but in Japan? Again, why?

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Yup, its hot.  but this happened every year in summer.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

An odd question, do most Japanese sweat less?

Sometimes under sweltering heat I can see some Japanese barely breaking a sweat.

And generally antiperspirants aren't as common here maybe due to that less sweat?

9 ( +9 / -0 )

My guess would be that the extended cool rainy season this year has prevented people's bodies from getting acclimatized. Hence the big numbers.

I normally have a tan by now, but my legs are still pasty white. I use sunscreen of course, but prefer to get exposed in nice small steps, not huge jumps that cause serious sunburn in a couple of hours. I may have to ride my bike in tights :(

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

I still do not know why and how it was decided to invite the Olympic to Tokyo in sweltering summer which is not just hot but unbelievably muggy. All Japanese know it is the most uncomfortable season in Japan and inappropreate for athletics excepting swimming maybe. So much so that, we were very surprised when it was decided. It was initiated by Ishihara and pushed by Mori. The procedure of the decision was done without listening and reflecting opinions of the people.

10 ( +11 / -1 )

It's not just the heat, it's also the humidity.

The best for human being seems to be 40~50%. In Japan it easily goes to 80%, and the more humid, the hotter it feels, even if the temperature is not that high.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Cancel all outdoor club activities. Wear appropriate clothing. Drink plenty of fluids. Wear a hat or use a parasol. Stay out of the sun as much as you can.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Rest (includes cooling).

Refuel (food intake).

Rehydrate.

Follow these commands and you shall not fall victim to the dangers of heat illnesses... mostly not.

Ladies scared of the sunshine in contact with their skin? Sunblock is very efficient at that. It works way better than wrapping your entire body with Jersey pants/jacket/hat and a towel around the neck. Like those female teachers during sports days.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

I was going to post something about grilled eel day and the weather, glad I didn't now.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

An odd question, do most Japanese sweat less?

I think so but the habit of many Japanese not to take a shower in the morning can be very unpleasant on my morning commute. Sometimes I think I can tell what some were drinking the night before.

12 ( +12 / -0 )

@Do the hustle

People have different heat thresholds. Also, hydration plays a key part in it as well. Furthermore, what is not hot to you may be burning to someone else. For me, I have to stay extremely hydrated once it gets into the mid 20’s. It’s not so much the heat, but the humidity here drains me. I go through 3 to four shirts a day in the summer. I go through 5 gallons of water during work time.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Is it so hard to teach people to hydrate, not to overdress, and try to limit working too long under the sun? Too many people I know only drink like 500ml of water all day. Minimum, you should drink 2 liters.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I live in a danchi housing near Tokyo. They have people working to clean the danchi area. They work under strong sunshines in summer, but surprisingly, they do not have showers for them at their offices. UR semi-governmental organization controling danchi does not care about their end-of-the-line workers. They go home after work without taking showers. Many Japanese organizations do not observe bottom lines. This is a disgrace.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

I will never understand why those numbers every year are so high. I understand elderly people having issues with the heat, but I bet that high number isn't just elderly people. I still see people out when it's 32 something degrees doing regular outdoor activities with non breathable clothing on I just don't understand it. I get stared at when I bust out my sweat towel, fan and water bottle. I feel like every summer I'm missing something but it's hot out and I am going to be prepared.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

Is it so hard to teach people to hydrate, not to overdress

I'm to think that it is. Remember being told at school too try not to drink water in front of the students because it wasn't fair because the students couldn't drink water.

This was a while ago but I just remember staring at that teacher in shock and horror because the kids had water bottles they just weren't allowed to drink them. Schools don't have AC I pretty much talked with a towel around my neck the entire time do to me sweating so badly. I don't think I'll ever get it

7 ( +7 / -0 )

@dabetsushi

While my daughters school is out for the summer and they don't hold the same rules for 特別保育... My daughters school has designated drinking times and they get scolded if they run off to drink their water bottles. They break like once an hour for a minute or two so everyone can drink but they're not supposed to drink outside of those times. I always thought that was weird rule for small children, but it's not anything I could change.

9 ( +10 / -1 )

I agree with almost all the sentiments here - while some incidents are unfortunately bound to happen, most are avoidable.

I've also heard that many of the medical problems and deaths to the elderly happen in homes where there is an air conditioner that is turned off and rarely (or never) used. They choose to follow "traditional" (read: ineffectual) methods of keeping cool, and for whatever reason are against those fancy contraptions mounted on the wall. I've also got aging parents who resist many forms of modern technology, but they might stab you if you ever got in between them and the air conditioner in summer.

klausdorth: club activities must go on

dabestsushi: Remember being told at school too try not to drink water in front of the students because it wasn't fair because the students couldn't drink water.

Exactly. Idiotic 19th century thinking about what's "necessary" or "tradition" trumps common sense. People get so caught up in their obeying of rules that they forget to think for themselves. I've had Japanese friends tell me stories about their school days on sports teams, where they were forced to practice hard outside without water, in order to build their mettle.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Electrical systems won’t support an AC some places, and there is that custom of not using the AC at night because it is reputed to make you sick. In any case, yes, drinking more water and moving strenuous activity to a cooler part of the day would be good.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

How many marathon runners do we see practicing now in Tokyo for next year? Surely there is no better preparation for what is in store.

And if not, why not?

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

It is often said that many Japanese do not sweat because their bodies have 'lost' the ability with the ever-present 24-hr availability of air conditioners. This inability to sweat is also given as a danger factor in the figures for heat/sun stroke.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

When my Japanese friends were young and playing baseball at school in the summer they were always told not to drink any water. Perhaps the human body learns to adapt to the set conditions?

Now of course the advice is the complete opposite, but old people remember their youth. Some may even be conflicted internally by the differing advice from the 'experts'.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

People whose ancestors have been located north of the equator for a considerate amount of time had to deal with very cold temperatures before the advent of modern technology. Those weather conditions along with other factors influenced the human bodies of those people to change for that environment. Mostly it involved conserving heat. It included straight hair that lays down, more body fat to muscle ratio, less sweat and reduced surface area which means longer torsos with shorter limbs to keep the heat concentrated on the organs regardless of height. There will always be a few genetic variations, but those were the most significant and common developments.

Even though some peoples have changed, the entire population has not, thus it will be harder from some people to deal with the rising global temperatures than others.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Alarming fact: Exactly a year from now in 2020, the Summer Olympics are scheduled to begin in Tokyo. You can thank the greedy IOC for that stupid decision, since they apparently want the games held in July or August to insure high TV ratings. The 1964 Summer Olympics in Tokyo began on October 10, a sensible decision. Seoul, which has similarly brutal weather in July and August, hosted the Summer Olympics in 1988 beginning on September 17.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

True story:

Today, I took off work for a doctor's appointment. In my neighborhood they are building a new house, so the ends of the street where the construction is taking place has been cut off by the traffic guards. Usually it is done by seniors like security guards, meter maids and parking lot attendants. The constructions has been going on for almost two weeks. Every morning and afternoon, I pass by the same elderly guy working one end of the street. That starts about 8AM and goes to almost 5 or 6PM.

I saw him this morning on my way to the doctor's. Nothing unusual, he just notices or ignores the foreigner going by like always. When I returned home about 1:30PM, it was a quite a hot walk from the station. Then I saw the guy slumped over on a very small bench which is mostly just for decoration near a small apartment complex where he is working. It is like a child seat, but it was under a very small shade tree. Luckily, there was a vending machine infront of the apartment complex. So, I bought a soda for me and an extra 100 yen bottle of water. I walked up to him, smiled and just stretched out my arm with the bottle of water in my hand. The dude didn't hesitate to grab that bottle. There was no Japanese politeness or anything. He actually to a sip before thanking me. He looked in bad shape. In addition to being slumped over, his eyes were blood shot red like after being a sauna, onsen or really hot shower. I just told him to be careful and kept moving.

I mean if it was a little uncomfortable for an abled by person like myself who grew up in a warm and humid climate then I know this elderly man was struggling out there all day especially during the mid day. I am probably going to check back with him tomorrow. Hopefully, the bottle was enough to get him through the rest of his shift, and he takes my warning seriously.

I know that he has to look professional in his uniform, but those workers need an ice cooler, or at least be allowed to bring like a frozen water bottle to work if they stand out in the sun all day!

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Amazing fact 2.

"The 1940 Summer Olympics, officially known as the Games of the XII Olympiad, were originally scheduled to be held from September 21 to October 6, 1940, in Tokyo, Japan."

At least they got something right. (Right wingers, take note!)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1940_Summer_Olympics

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

An odd question, do most Japanese sweat less?

Sometimes under sweltering heat I can see some Japanese barely breaking a sweat.

And generally antiperspirants aren't as common here maybe due to that less sweat?

They do but supposedly only in the summer while we wear deodorant year-round. My mail delivery guy is a pretty big dude and he breaks a sweat just from the 3m walk from his van to my door.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Farmboy

Electrical systems won’t support an AC some places,

All domestic services support AC but you need to have the 110 volt types and not the stronger 220 volt which requires 3 phase supply.

AC are suppose to have their own 20A circuit breakers but if its used only for cooling the power outlet can be used.

It's too expensive to have the AC on all the time for most people. I cool the room then turn it off and use fans. We don't use AC overnight but I leave the window open and listen to the crickets and use a fan.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

And yet some people (mostly Japanese males) carry around or wear sweaters and jackets, claiming it's "not hot" and some go as far as saying "It's cold" in the office.............give me a break.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Why ?

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

Just a couple of days ago, I saw people jogging around Asakusa under the midday-sun. Couldn't help but wonder why they'd do that to themselves!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Why in Philippines or other countries where the temperature rises there is no such a mass-dying or getting sick for the heat...? I can't believe that they are just not counted.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Electrical systems won’t support an AC some places, and there is that custom of not using the AC at night because it is reputed to make you sick. 

Strange custom. I would rather be sick than dead.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Was there a heat wave last week? Do people start dying when temps get to 33’?

Hustle, did you hear about humidity at least once ???

1 ( +2 / -1 )

what was the humidex? If it was 70% humidity at 33C then it felt like 43C.

lots of calculators out there like this one that have a Celsius option: https://www.calculator.net/heat-index-calculator.html

0 ( +1 / -1 )

We rarely use the air con as I hate it. When the heat gets unbearable we put it on until the room is cool then use a fan. Never use it at night, it always dries out my throat and nose.

I don't think it's healthy to be perpetually in aircon during the summer, when you do go outside your body struggles to cope.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Death Olympics on the way! Get ready, hospitals! I had some mild heat stroke on Sunday after a BBQ. Was under a tent, but apparently the tent didn't block UV, and I got absolutely toasted. Maybe sunstroke more than heatstroke. Walked home then iced myself down for the night. Still feel wonky two days later.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Heat waves don't just happen in Japan. Many people around the world are affected by it during this time of year.

Nice to see on an article that says 11 people have died that you would have such negative things to say.

You have a lot of class and it shows.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Keep the ac on 24/7-it feels like the right thing to do!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

We are creatures of habit. Managers should tell the employees or older part-timers to stay in the shade and take it easy. Nobody should die on the job.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I want to say why don't they learn from the year before? It's not like it's the first time it's gotten hot in Japan.

But then I remember that I live in Seattle and every year when it rains, drivers act like they've never seen water on the ground before even though the weather is the same every year.

I guess people just don't learn anywhere.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Obviously, Japan isn't ready for the Olympics. Unfortunately, Japan can't ask for a delay. Fortunately, there isn't any way to forecast weathers for next year. So death isn't a certainty.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@vanityofvanities

I still do not know why and how it was decided to invite the Olympic to Tokyo in sweltering summer which is not just hot but unbelievably muggy.

"The Summer Olympics are simply of less value if held in October because of pre-existing program commitments for sports," [Neal Pilson, the former president of CBS Sports] told Reuters.” (July 26, 2018)

$.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

150km on m’y bike last Saturday. It is always difficult on the first hot day. The heat was bearable but after 100k, I really felt down and my body could not cool off well. I had an extra stop for water before ending, which in a normal way I won’t do. But many roads in Kanto do not have shade, and adding the heat from the ground, ouah.....

Here in Japan, I am sure some people have pride to keep doing things even if it is hot, it is like a warrior coming back from the field, I am a bit like that on my bike, but otherwise, as it is hot anyway, if we wanna do outdoor activities and keep training, not much choice.

But for kids, I think they should stop all sports during the summer vacations, let the kids having a real time out, and that will avoid heatstroke, But the kamikaze spirit is still here

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

it is not that hot.. just drink more water and wear hat.. its a lovely weather.. perfect for cycling and running outside

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Silvafan, the construction workers in summer are allowed to drink and so on and their uniforms also have option to have fan built in.. its him being too stuppid or ignorant to buy water.. and btw he shouldnt be sitting in shade, its his job to keep people safe... cant do the job - quit.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

if the Olympics are going to be bad because of the excessive heat what about the next World Cup in Qatar?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Silvafan, the construction workers in summer are allowed to drink and so on and their uniforms also have option to have fan built in.. its him being too stuppid or ignorant to buy water.. and btw he shouldnt be sitting in shade, its his job to keep people safe... cant do the job - quit.

He isn't a construction worker! He is one of the elderly guys who redirects traffic! They are required to wear full uniforms and stand on the street. Construction workers are usually younger with options for dress. In addition, if the outside portion of the house is built then they can be in the shade. Those guys must be in there designated area the entire time.

Not really the same!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@Alex Einz

It's not hot outside? Right now the heat index is 45 C (113 F) at 80% humidity in Tokyo. If you don't think that's hot then we must live on a different planet, mate.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

its 30c with 80% humidity which according to index table is 38 to 34 c, so no it aint that hot.

https://www.weather.gov/ffc/hichart

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

well Silvafan, then tell him not to sit in shade but stand where is meant to.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

I checked right while I was posting, now it's gone down significantly because the sun has set but

https://weather.com/weather/today/l/511ab40d0c165c3ca84e2189ce555aba8f50089ad0a8f2a1181e6f8e30f4428a

Mid day it was much hotter, and I recorded what the website said exactly. So... shrug

1 ( +1 / -0 )

actually A/C contributes allot to global warming if you think about it. the heat of people and products must be pumped up the scale and dumped outside at a higher temp than the ambient to include the heat of the compressor doing it, and you have millions of units doing that. The freon gas is sealed inside so its not contributing to anything if it doesnt leak.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I'm waiting for the annual "85-year-old dies working in a field at 12 noon" story, where we're all expected to pretend the tragedy wasn't entirely avoidable.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Spare a thought for some of the Homeless.

I saw one person recently as I was passing-by to grab lunch, outside of Tokyo Station having CPR being administered by a Heroic set of first Responders. The Fire Brigade were there before the Ambulance crew!!! The Person's feet were on show and grey(ish) coloured so I have to assume a Homeless person - but why were they outside - surely, Tokyo Station could be sympathetic to their needs and let them stay underground where it's cooler, even if, they have to restrict the area to which they're located ?

Who's to blame ?

Certainly not the Emergency Reponders whom I saw, nor the Woman who I think may have alerted them originally to the plight of that persons peril.

Tokyo Station ? ..... I don't know. Are they proactively kicking out Homeless people during these extreme weather incidents ?

Who owns.. . Tokyo Station ?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The guy in my story had to take a couple of two days off. He suffered a very mild heatstroke like I thought.

@Alex Einz 0-5.

LOL!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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