- Title: Greece swelters as worst heatwave in decades tests grid, fries eggs
- Date: 2nd August 2021
- Summary: ATHENS, GREECE (AUGUST 2, 2021) (REUTERS) PACKED BEACH NEAR ATHENS TWO WOMEN SITTING IN SHALLOW WATER PEOPLE IN SEA AND ON BEACH VARIOUS OF SEA FULL OF PEOPLE VARIOUS OF MAN SELLING HATS, TOYS AND OTHER BEACH WARES WALKING AROUND PACKED BEACH VARIOUS OF WOMAN SUNNING HERSELF AND HOLDING A HAT OVER HER HEAD LARISSA, GREECE (AUGUST 2, 2021) (REUTERS) PAN ON DIRT GROUND, MAN BREAKING EGG IN PAN, EGG COOKING IN PAN (TEMPERATURES REACHED 46 DEGREES CELSIUS IN CENTRAL GREECE) MAN BREAKING EGG ON METAL SURFACE, EGG COOKING
- Embargoed: 16th August 2021 15:30
- Keywords: Acropolis Greek heatwave Kyriakos Mitsotakis sea swimming traffic
- Location: ATHENS AND LARISSA, GREECE
- City: ATHENS AND LARISSA, GREECE
- Country: Greece
- Topics: Environment,Europe,Weather,Editors' Choice
- Reuters ID: LVA003EOL8HMV
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Temperatures soared across Greece on Monday (August 2) as the worst heatwave in decades pushed the power system to its limits and Greeks and tourists headed to fountains and beaches to cool down.
With the weather service forecasting temperatures in the capital as high as 44 Celsius (111 Fahrenheit) this week, energy authorities have warned that power demand will skyrocket, testing the capacity of an electricity grid already burdened by more than three million holiday-makers during the summer tourist season.
The Acropolis, Greece's most visited archaeological site, was shut before noon local time on Monday, to protect visitors from the heat as sweaty tourists made their way down from the marble steps.
"This is horrendous, simply put," tourist Elizabeth Cosco told Reuters as she left the monument. "It's horrible. We're from Houston, Texas, and this is hotter."
"It's just very hot. I am not used to it. It's been a lovely day but very, very hot," said Gordon Teahy, a tourist from Scotland, his face red, sitting in the shade of a tree outside the Acropolis' closed gates.
Authorities advised people to limit power usage at peak times in the afternoon and evening to prevent the electricity system collapsing, with households and businesses turning up air conditioners to seek relief from the brutal heat.
"We're dealing with the worst heatwave since 1987," Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis said after attending a meeting at a power management centre and referring to a week-long heatwave when more than 1,000 people died. "Everything humanly possible has been done to secure the country's power supply. But we are also asking consumers to help us."
Beaches near Athens were packed with people seeking an escape from the heat.
But some Greeks, like Ira Kazou, who works in the tourism industry and won't have a single day off this month, still had to come into the city to work.
"It's very hard, we're not used to living with these temperatures," said Kazou.
In Larissa, a town in central Greece where the national weather service forecast 46 degrees Celsius (114.8 Fahrenheit) for midday, one man was able to cook two eggs outside with no other power source but the heat from the ground.
(Production: Stamos Prousalis, Paschalis Mantis, Phoebe Fronista)
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2021. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None