Extreme Heat Halts 2014 Australian OpenBy: Chad Sweely - January 17, 2014
While extreme cold temperatures blasted many parts of the United States this winter, Australia is seeing record-breaking high temperatures as many regions of the “land down under” reach above 100 degrees (Fahrenheit). With these temperatures being so high, it does a take toll on the tennis players who play outside in this year’s Australian Open, held in Melbourne, Australia.
On day four of the Australian Open, all outdoor tennis matches were halted as the event’s Extreme Heat Policy went into affect just prior to 2 P.M. on Thursday, January 16th. According to The Weather Channel, the temperature reached 110 degrees Fahrenheit at this time, making playing conditions unbearable for the tennis players who were currently competing outside at the time.
Australia’s Sydney Morning Herald reports that tournament referee Wayne McEwen enacted the heat policy during the day, deeming the intolerable heat conditions unsafe for tennis players. An announcement that the games were halted was then immediately announced on the Australian Open’s official Twitter account.[timeout]
The Extreme Heat Policy has now been implemented. More to follow. #ausopen
— Australian Open (@AustralianOpen) January 16, 2014
The Weather Channel also states that this is the first time that outside tennis play has been halted since 2009. Games later resumed at the Australian Open after 6 P.M. as the temperatures started to cool down in the evening.
Not only did the Australian Open encounter the extreme heat wave, but later encountered strong thunder storms. Many Twitter users at the event caught some pictures of the crazy weather pattern and shared them with the rest of the world. An example of the lightning can be seen below.[timeout]
After the 108-degree heat baked the Australian Open, a massive thunderstorm moved in with frightening lightning. pic.twitter.com/WArChUEqjO
— Mentality Mag (@MentalityMag) January 16, 2014
Image via Wikimedia Commons