Budapest is currently experiencing one of the most gruelling heat waves in years. In the brutal 37-40 degrees Celsius heat, travelling by public transport can often be a hellish experience. From barely working air conditioning to none at all, public transport is becoming a group sauna experience. Continue reading below for pedestrian accounts of the unbearable heat on BKK vehicles.
Our perception of heat and the actual temperature around us is fundamentally influenced by how warm the surfaces around us are. If the air is hot, we should create or look for an environment where the surfaces are cooler than the air around us, and we will feel better, writes enbudapestem.hu.
Where there is little shade and many surfaces that heat up easily, a heat island is formed. The temperature of such an island will be much warmer than, for example, a forest. In most parts of Budapest, there is almost no grassland, with green areas mainly on the outskirts of the capital. To ensure that Budapest remains a liveable place for decades to come, we must work on reducing the effects of urban heat islands at all costs. This includes more green spaces in the downtown districts of Budapest.
An older married couple complained that the heat restricts their journey through the city. “We often take bus line 99, but the AC barely works onboard. It is simply not worth it,” comments the husband. “I once had to get off the bus, the air was just that unbearable,” says the wife. In fact, temperatures on bus 99 can go up to 31.7 degrees Celsius, reports Blikk. The couple must find shelter against the heat. They enjoy the 25 degrees Celsius climate of an M4 metro station though.
On trams 4 and 6, passengers are subjected to an uncomfortable 29.6 degrees Celsius. But one public transport service rivals all others in terms of how hot it is onboard. On Budapest HÉV, commuter rail lines, there is a scorching 35 degrees Celsius. These train cars are long overdue for a replacement, seeing as none of them was designed with air conditioning. Even with open windows, there is barely any air passing through the vehicle.
BKK has yet to publicly announce how many of its vehicles have no air conditioning. On a brighter note, MÁV’s press department came forth with their answer. 67 percent of their suburban trains and 42 percent of their total train cars do have working air conditioning.
Source: enbudapestem.hu, blikk.hu