The heat is giving no quarter in the City of Buenos Aires and, while everyone is waiting for it to rain, the National Meteorological Service (SMN) confirmed that a new record was broken. Temperatures exceeded 38.8 °C on Saturday, according to the Buenos Aires Central Observatory (OCBA).
The city had a red weather warning, reaching a record 38.6 °C at 2 p.m.— the highest temperature in 117 years for March, according to the SMN. The agency also said that for the first time in history, the city of Buenos Aires exceeded the maximum temperature threshold for a heat wave (32.3 °C) for 12 consecutive days.
It also noted that “it is the second time this month that Buenos Aires city has broken the absolute record for March”. The last time was on March 2, when the temperature reached 38 °C.
According to the SMN’s warning system, a red weather warning is in effect for the city and the Buenos Aires province districts of Almirante Brown, Avellaneda, Berazategui, Florencio Varela, Lanús, Lomas de Zamora, Presidente Perón and Quilmes.
Record-breaking temperatures also hit Berisso, Ensenada, La Plata, Brandsen, Cañuelas, San Vicente, Esteban Echeverría, La Matanza, Ezeiza and Merlo, which saw the highest temperature in the country on Friday when it recorded a heat index – what the temperature feels like when accounting for humidity – of 44.1 °C in the afternoon.
Similarly, Buenos Aires city also reached stifling highs with 41.2 °C heat index.
The places with the highest temperatures in the country — 38 °C and above— were districts in the province of Buenos Aires such as Morón, Junín, Pehuajó, Moreno, Ezeiza, La Plata, Lomas del Palomar as well as the city of Rosario in Santa Fe province. The city of Buenos Aires (38.6°C), where the humidity reached 38%, also made it to the list.
A red weather warning is the maximum alert issued by the weather agency, indicating that temperatures can have a “high to extreme effect on health” and can be “very dangerous and affect everyone, even healthy people.” Increased water consumption and avoiding excessive exposure to sunlight is recommended, especially during the hottest hours of the day (between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.).
The SMN issued an orange weather warning for districts in the north of the province of Buenos Aires, including Las Heras, General Rodríguez, Luján, Marcos Paz, San Andrés de Giles, Escobar, San Fernando, Tigre, Vicente López, San Isidro, as well as General San Martin, Hurlingham, Ituzaingó, José C. Paz, Morón and Moreno. These areas had maximum temperatures between 36°C and 38°C.
There is an orange weather warning in the forecast for a large part of Entre Ríos province, in Gualeguaychú, Ibicuy, Diamante, La Paz and Nogoyá, and Corrientes province (in Concepción, Curuzú Cuatiá, General Alvear, Paso de los Libres, Santo Tomé), with similar temperatures.
In Entre Ríos, the temperature in Gualeguaychú was at 37.6°C this afternoon — among the highest in the SMN ranking for the province alongside Concordia, with 37.5°C.
There is a yellow weather warning — for temperatures between 34°C and 38°C — in effect for the province of Buenos Aires, north and south Entre Ríos, west Corrientes, Santa Fe, Córdoba, southeast Santiago del Estero, the valleys and mountainous area of Catamarca, Tucumán, southeast Santiago del Estero, north and south of San Luis, north of La Pampa and northeast Chubut.
For orange weather warnings, the SMN idicates that there can be a moderate to high effect on health and that temperatures can be very dangerous, especially for risk groups. For yellow weather warnings, the effects are mild to moderate, and those most affected may be children and people over 65 years old with chronic illnesses.