Blog: It ain't half hot in er, Moscow
Simon Warburton | 27 July 2010
I tend to look at the Moscow temperatures on a daily basis (I know) with a sort of grim fascination as they frequently challenge the lower end of the mercury scale.
And having endured almost unspeakable cold there several times myself - once having spent some time in a Russian hospital with my dodgy knee - I can vouch for its bone-chilling ability to freeze just about anything.
So it was with some incredulity that I have been watching the thermometer rise and rise these past few weeks.
And now comes news that GAZ Group has had to curtail production as the temperature is simply too high.
A quick call to Russia confirms the heatwave. "It's very, very hot, it's 39 degrees Celsius," an almost breathless Russian woman tells me.
There are even reports of cars spontaneously bursting into flames in Moscow after short circuiting in the unprecedented heat.
Russians are used to defrosting cars and trucks in some of the most hostile conditions on earth, but I bet even this tough race can hardly have anticipated spontaneous fire being on their list of weather-related challenges.
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