Weather tracker: Pakistan heatwave continues wild changes in weather patterns

<span>A Pakistani security official offers cold drinks to people in Karachi.</span><span>Photograph: Shahzaib Akber/EPA</span>
A Pakistani security official offers cold drinks to people in Karachi.Photograph: Shahzaib Akber/EPA

Pakistan is in the midst of an intense heatwave, with hundreds of heatstroke victims being treated in hospitals across the country.

Temperatures soared to 49C (120F) on Wednesday in Mohenjo-daro, in the southern Sindh province. These temperatures are more than 8C above May’s average daytime temperature. Authorities in Punjab have been forced to close schools for a week and are advising people to remain indoors. Many labourers have, however, continued to work out of financial necessity.

These anomalously high May temperatures have followed the country’s wettest April since 1961, with more than double the usual monthly rainfall. These wild changes in weather patterns have been attributed to human-made climate change, which has led to significant flooding and record-breaking high temperatures causing devastation in Pakistan over recent years. The high temperatures are forecast to continue through this weekend and into next week, with temperatures in the capital, Islamabad, expected to exceed 40C.

Related: The world’s poorest people didn’t cause the climate crisis, but they bear the brunt of it| Letter

In the US midwest, several powerful tornadoes ripped through Iowa, causing a path of destruction through the city of Greenfield on Tuesday. The Iowa Department of Public Safety said the tornadoes killed four people in the area, while a further death occurred 25 miles away when a woman’s car was blown off the road. At least a further 35 people were reportedly injured, though this figure will probably rise as the recovery operation begins.

As well as the many homes destroyed by the Greenfield tornado, five large turbines at a wind farm were crumpled, one of them bursting into flames. Just before being hit, the turbines recorded winds of up to 100mph. The tornado was also said to have been on the ground for more than 40 miles resulting in a long path of destruction. The US recorded the second-highest number of tornadoes in a month in April.

Thunderstorms also hit Davao City in the Philippines on Thursday, resulting in knee-deep floods in parts of the city and rendering several roads impassable, according to local reports. The Talomo River overflowed, inundating nearby residential areas.