With the recent heat wave in Australia and the Summer quickly approaching in the 'up and over' part of the world, you have to ask yourself what range of temperatures can actually become dangerous. According to the Australian newspaper The Guardian, in remote Moomba, a gas exploration town in the outback of South Australia, the temperature hit 49.6C (121F).
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Research has shown that when the outdoor temperature reaches 35C (95F), accompanied by high humidity, health is put at danger. Once 40C (104F) is reached, it becomes dangerous even if the humidity levels are low. Suffice to say, at 50C (122F), the risk is even higher.
The elderly, babies, children, and pregnant women are more susceptible to temperature extremes. This is also the case for individuals with heart or breathing problems. Certains drugs can also make it more difficult for the body to rid itself of excess heat. Click here for a list of these 'heat loving' drugs.
Temperature extremes often don't get the media attention that enviromental disasters get. Truth is, temperature extremes cause more fatalities than do floods, earthquakes and tornadoes. In 1988, up to 10,000 people died due to the hot summer in the U.S. (BBC News, 9jan13).