I hail from a climate that tends to get hot in the summer. The day I got married, the heat index was 105.
So it’s easy to hear about the heat wave that has been plaguing the Pacific Northwest and think it’s maybe not that big a deal. But it actually is a very big deal.
Like the Texans who weren’t prepared to deal with the cold, that region really isn’t prepared to deal with sustained record-breaking heat.
And it has been record breaking.
🇨🇦 Canada didn't just beat its long-standing all-time national heat record…
It knocked it out of the park by a staggering +1.6°C. This record wont even last 24 hours, the heatwave is just getting started.
It is only June. Annual highest temperature is normally in late July! pic.twitter.com/83K3F1ACXN
— Scott Duncan (@ScottDuncanWX) June 28, 2021
Not only do families not have air conditioning on the regular, the infrastructure wasn’t built for this kind of heat.
Think I’m joking? Check out these 15 pictures that really illustrate just how bad it is.
1. The actual ROADS are buckling
This is not a drill, and it’s not a disaster movie.
State Route 544 milepost 7 near Everson, Wa is currently closed. The asphalt roadway is buckling and unsafe for travel. WSDOT is advised and detours are currently being set up.
— Trooper Rocky Oliphant (@wspd7pio) June 28, 2021
2. Railroad tracks are MELTING
Portland has become the fiery inferno of Mount Doom.
Cool cool cool cool cool.
3. It’s literally burning HOLES in power cables
They don’t make these different for different climates right?
This is bad.
In case you're wondering why we're canceling service for the day, here's what the heat is doing to our power cables. pic.twitter.com/EqbKUgCJ3K
— Portland Streetcar (@PDXStreetcar) June 27, 2021
4. Even their HOUSES are melting!
Paint, sure, but vinyl??
— Molly Bloom Brat (@MollyBloom10) June 28, 2021
5. Not to mention their Air Conditioners are EXPLODING
And that’s if they’re lucky enough to have AC at all!
6. Skylights are turning homes into Easy Bake Ovens
Thank god for cardboard, am I right?
Wife and I when we bought our house: “omg the SKYLIGHTS! We’ll have so much natural light!”
Today: “omg how make stop heat rays of death”
It’s taken the heat in the house waaaay down. pic.twitter.com/aIgAldLL9n
— 𝚂𝚎𝚌𝚠𝟶𝚗𝚔 𝙵𝚘𝚛 𝚆𝚘𝚛𝚔𝚐𝚛𝚘𝚞𝚙𝚜 3.11 (@secwonk311) June 27, 2021
7. Plastic toys inside their home are losing shape
Just imagine the unseen damages to the infrastructure.
The heat wave hitting BC is reeking havoc on my toy room. Things are warping/bending and figure joints seem to be getting loose and making stuff fall over pic.twitter.com/GsDChb6F3D
— Eric 🇨🇦 (he/him) (@TheKrakenDude) June 27, 2021
But humans are nothing if not resilient, and they are fighting back.
8. Buying up all the ice cream before it can melt
Smart thinking, right there.
9. We have snow day French toast
They have heat wave picnics.
Seattle grocery stores in a heat wave just as bad as before a snow storm! pic.twitter.com/ad8WDSLzaV
— Claire Luv (@claireluv3) June 27, 2021
10. And proving old adages are true
We’ve all heard it, but we never really believed it.
11. People are making ad hoc swimming pools
I mean I guess they’re going to try to cool off in it.
It’s so hot in Portland my uncle and I filled his skateboarding bowl with hose water 😤😭😢 pic.twitter.com/ncGQxuyQzl
— Tucker J. (@TuckerJaroll) June 27, 2021
12. And ad hoc puppy pools
This is pretty ingenious, TBH.
13. All jokes aside, it’s a serious matter
They’re opening cooling centers to try to keep people out of hospitals.
— Lincoln Graves (@LincolnGraves) June 25, 2021
14. Plants are dying
I love hydrangeas, and this breaks my heart.
15. Even the perpetually snow-capped mountains are suffering
An absolute sign of just how bad it is.
snow melt from excessive heat in BC pic.twitter.com/pFjdDAJpIC
— THE TAO OF NOW (@InTheNoosphere) June 28, 2021
Wow. I’d heard about the roads buckling, but this was worse than I thought.
Makes me kind of worried about the future, what about you? Share your thoughts in the comments.