India sees sharp fall in heat wave deaths
By Vinayak Dewan
The death toll from the intense heat that strikes India each year between March and July has dropped drastically over the past three years, according to the latest data from the National Disaster Management Authority.
In 2018, 13 people have died from exposure to extreme temperatures. Just three years ago, in 2015, the figure was 2,422.
Last year, the national toll was less than 250.
Taking a proactive approach, the National Disaster Management Authority launched a series of initiatives in summer 2016 to turn the situation around.
Roofs were painted white to reduce heat absorption; state governments adjusted working hours to avoid exposure during extreme hot weather periods; drinking water kiosks were opened, supplied by water tankers; and special shelters were opened for the homeless, according to V. Thiruppugazh, the authority's joint secretary.