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(BBC)   Since Fark has spent the last week mocking the UK for its 85 degree "heatwave", here are ten reasons why the country is so poorly equipped to deal with it   (bbc.co.uk ) divider line
    More: Followup, Network Rail, building projects, energy consumption, GCSE, Mintel  
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14987 clicks; posted to Main » on 18 Jul 2013 at 2:31 PM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-07-18 02:12:13 PM  
7 votes:
It's like when we make fun of the southern states for being pretty much completely shut down whenever they get about an inch of snow. There are a variety of reasons why their infrastructure isn't set up to handle snow, and a population with a lack of personal experience handling it also complicates matters.

None of this makes it not hilarious or mockable though.
2013-07-18 02:53:39 PM  
4 votes:

FTA:

just 0.5% of houses and flats in the UK had any kind of air con...the US, where nearly 100 million homes have it

I hate when "journalists"  they do this.  How the hell am I supposed to compare the percent of UK houses to the number of US houses.  This juxtaposition is utterly meaningless without more context.
2013-07-18 02:39:42 PM  
4 votes:

amindtat: #11  [www.journeywoman.com image 250x248]


man when i visited europe last late summer, i missed ice cubes badly. why are those losers stuck in the middle ages? give me my AC and ice cubes any day.
2013-07-18 03:14:21 PM  
3 votes:
All I took out of that article:

news.bbcimg.co.uk

Drinking fountains point straight up in the UK?  Gross.
2013-07-18 02:37:55 PM  
3 votes:
They can't figure out where to shove in 'u' into 'air conditioning'.
2013-07-18 02:56:21 PM  
2 votes:

TheOmni: It's like when we make fun of the southern states for being pretty much completely shut down whenever they get about an inch of snow. There are a variety of reasons why their infrastructure isn't set up to handle snow, and a population with a lack of personal experience handling it also complicates matters.


No, it's actually quite different.

Getting an inch of snow means the roads are going to be slippery, and if you don't have the *PHYSICAL* infrastructure to deal with it (snowplows, huge piles of sand and salt), it can be a problem.  And that infrastructure costs money to maintain.  It's just not economical for government to maintain that in places that rarely get snow.

On the other hand, a couple of window fans (one facing in, one facing out in different rooms) can provide the draft necessary to keep a flat reasonably cool.  In fact, you'd want to do that at night, to get the cool air in, and then button up the flat and close the curtains/shades/blinds during the day to keep it cooler.

Also, the human body can put up with a very high temperatures so long as it stays hydrated properly.  Keep the water intake up, and the electrolytes balanced, and you should be fine as long as you don't have any major underlying health issues.

It's uncomfortable, but there is no reason why temperatures in the mid-80s to low 90s should be *FATAL*.
2013-07-19 09:04:49 AM  
1 vote:

Ima4nic8or: The average UK one-bedroom home is a compact 46 sq m (495 sq ft),

That there is what their bowing down to their nanny state gets them.  I would seriously farking rebel if the only option was a sub 500 foot space with shared walls.


Population density in the United States:88.6/sq mi (34.2/km2) (179th densest in the world)
Population density in the United Kingdom:  661.9/sq mi (255.6/km2) (51st densest in the world)

Now try and guess why British houses are smaller.
2013-07-18 04:14:03 PM  
1 vote:

TheOmni: It's like when we make fun of the southern states for being pretty much completely shut down whenever they get about an inch of snow. There are a variety of reasons why their infrastructure isn't set up to handle snow, and a population with a lack of personal experience handling it also complicates matters.

None of this makes it not hilarious or mockable though.


too true.

Another example is when northern states spend years mocking southern states only to run around screaming like little girls when a hurricane hits.

/that shiat was hilarious.
2013-07-18 04:01:30 PM  
1 vote:
I remember watching a BBC series where a middle class family had to live one month traveling through time from the year 1970-2000, I was shocked at the different standards of living between the UK and the US over those time periods.  The 70s were really enlightening.
2013-07-18 03:38:46 PM  
1 vote:
archbishop: I hate when "journalists"  they do this.  How the hell am I supposed to compare the percent of UK houses to the number of US houses.  This juxtaposition is utterly meaningless without more context.

You use this thing called the "Internet". You might have heard of it.

http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2012/tables/12s0982.pdf

As of 2010, there were 130,599,000 homes in the USA. Assuming TFA is correct about nearly 100 million homes including A/C (I can't be bothered to check their figures), that's about 77% of US homes being airconditioned.

dittybopper: On the other hand, a couple of window fans (one facing in, one facing out in different rooms) can provide the draft necessary to keep a flat reasonably cool.  In fact, you'd want to do that at night, to get the cool air in, and then button up the flat and close the curtains/shades/blinds during the day to keep it cooler.

You know how I know you've never been in a British house? My parents have a fairly modern, expensive, two-story (plus attic) home in the UK, within an hour of London. Even with every single window in the house open and fans running full-tilt, the insulation that makes that home economical for most of the year works against it to make it almost uninhabitable in these rare heatwaves. (I know, I went through one myself about 15 years ago, and it was so damned uncomfortable indoors that you were better off sitting outside.)

Mikey1969: And "well insulated" doesn't mean that your "flat" will be hotter, otherwise, they wouldn't even bother with insulation in homes in Phoenix. It keeps the cold in, also.

American "well insulated" =/= UK "well insulated".

Also, keeps what cold in, precisely? Did you miss how most UK homes have no A/C, because for the overwhelming majority of the time, most UK homes *need* no A/C?

Valiente: British water heaters tend to work on demand and can be as small as toaster ovens.

What is this I don't even.

Every British house I've ever been in has had a large water heater, and not run it on demand -- because you pay less for the power at night. You have a water heater big enough to get you through the day, perhaps with a separate smaller tank that runs on demand to supplement the stored water if it's getting cool.

/87F here today, wouldn't swap that for 80F in the UK, even if you paid me a hundred bucks for the day.
2013-07-18 03:38:31 PM  
1 vote:

Klopfer: cbauer357: teylix: amindtat: #11  [www.journeywoman.com image 250x248]

man when i visited europe last late summer, i missed ice cubes badly. why are those losers stuck in the middle ages? give me my AC and ice cubes any day.

Amen to that! It's damn hard to find an ice cube in Germany. One time, when I got a coke, I was given one ice cube and a room temperature soda.... sigh... The waitress thought I was insane when I explained to her to FILL the entire glass with ice.

Because you clearly are. If the glass is full of ice cubes you get less coke, so what's the point in ordering a coke anyway? (Oh, and go to McDonald's next time. You'll get more than one ice cube. Even during winter when it's farking freezing out there. Bastards.)


Coke/Pepsi is 99% water.  The other 1% is ungodly cheap.

In the US - companies purchase large amounts of concentrated syrup that they combine, on demand, with chilled water, ice, and CO2.  It's called a 'Fountain drink'.  Typically, an American will pay $2 USD for such a drink....served in a 20oz (500ml) or larger glass....and it will almost always include unlimited free refills.

Americans are not concerned about the loss of volume due to ice.

For whatever reason - soft-drinks at restaurants cost about a gazillion times more in the EU.

Comparing a place like Eddie Rockets to a place like Steak N Shake works out to Coke being six or seven times as expensive in the EU than in the US.  It boggles my mind.
2013-07-18 03:31:41 PM  
1 vote:

Valiente: All of Britain is north of 50N. It is moderated by the Gulf Stream into a sort of Goldilocks zone of frequent rains and temperatures in what North Americans would consider a very narrow range of 0-20C. (It was 36C/98F in Toronto yesterday, by contrast, and we are just south of 44N). If the weather starts to swing in accordance with the high latitude, and/or the Gulf Stream moves or ceases, Britain could be Siberia pretty quickly, with France being Southern Siberia, I suppose...or Northern Saskatchewan.



It's kind of incredible how much the Gulf Stream and Mediterranean (as a heat sink) moderate european weather.
I'm currently at 38 degrees, 12' North latutude, and while we may not get meters of snow every winter, we aren't strangers to the cold. Our record low temperature was -27F, and our 24-hour snowfall record is just shy of two feet.

Messina, Italy is as 38 degrees, 11' North latitude, and I doubt it has snowed there in living memory.
2013-07-18 03:31:17 PM  
1 vote:

jvl: ZAZ: Last week, 200 ScotRail services were cancelled or held up because of the heat. In temperatures of 30C (86F) the rails themselves can easily reach 50C.
The UK network uses continuous welded rail as this is safer, stronger and allows trains to travel more quickly over it, Network Rail says.

In Massachusetts commuter rail slows to 30 mph when temperature reaches 90. The state (country?) has not historically been a fan of continuous welded rail. Some has been installed over the past 15 years.

Yet somehow BART in the San Franscico Bay Area (with continuous rails) magically runs at full speed even when temperatures run up to 110F.


Well, I don't know if this is the *only* reason, but there is some important missing information.  What is the average hottest AND LOWEST temperatur in each area, as it is the delta-T that determines the amount of expansion to expect.

Lets say San Fran averages between 50* and 110*, they need to install rails such that the gaps aren't too big at 50* (when fully contracted) and not to small at 110*.  So they need to account for an expansion resulting from a 60* temperature difference.

In Boston, it could be more like 10* and 90*, so they will need to account for expansion resulting from an 80* change.

I imagine having to deal with snow/ice might come into play as well, but I honestly don't know.  In fact I could be totally wrong, there could be compeltely different reasons why one would be fine at 110* and the other would break at 90*...but just ebcause the highest temperature is higher in one place, does not mean that they ahve to worry teh most about thermal expansion.  It is the difference in temperature.
2013-07-18 03:25:45 PM  
1 vote:
This just in - people are bad at unhanding unexpected weather.

I'd rather have two weeks of 110 degree weather in the US than two weeks of 85 degree weather in the UK.

In the US my house, my car, my office, and every restaurant I went to - had AC.
In the UK nothing has AC, and if it does, it's inadequate AC.
2013-07-18 03:24:57 PM  
1 vote:
Bunch of pansy wankers, whinging about bollocks : it's 96 outside right now (35.6C) and I biked to work. AC in the office can't keep the temperature below 80 right now, but I have a fan for that.

/We now return you to other people bragging about their weather resistance...
rka
2013-07-18 03:23:45 PM  
1 vote:

23FPB23: Oh, and here in the US, we're idiots and weaklings because we don't have 3 snowplows and 47 loads of salt for every man, woman and child. And we wreck our cars in wholesale fashion after 15 minutes of sleet.


That's just you Southerners. There are parts of the continental US that get a damn site colder than Ottawa.
2013-07-18 03:23:01 PM  
1 vote:

Klopfer: cbauer357: teylix: amindtat: #11  [www.journeywoman.com image 250x248]

man when i visited europe last late summer, i missed ice cubes badly. why are those losers stuck in the middle ages? give me my AC and ice cubes any day.

Amen to that! It's damn hard to find an ice cube in Germany. One time, when I got a coke, I was given one ice cube and a room temperature soda.... sigh... The waitress thought I was insane when I explained to her to FILL the entire glass with ice.

Because you clearly are. If the glass is full of ice cubes you get less coke, so what's the point in ordering a coke anyway? (Oh, and go to McDonald's next time. You'll get more than one ice cube. Even during winter when it's farking freezing out there. Bastards.)


Maybe I should have been more clear. I got a glass with one ice cube and a small bottle of soda on the side. I just wanted the darn thing cold. I wasn't being cheated out of the proper amount that was paid for.
2013-07-18 03:20:13 PM  
1 vote:

Klopfer: cbauer357: teylix: amindtat: #11  [www.journeywoman.com image 250x248]

man when i visited europe last late summer, i missed ice cubes badly. why are those losers stuck in the middle ages? give me my AC and ice cubes any day.

Amen to that! It's damn hard to find an ice cube in Germany. One time, when I got a coke, I was given one ice cube and a room temperature soda.... sigh... The waitress thought I was insane when I explained to her to FILL the entire glass with ice.

Because you clearly are. If the glass is full of ice cubes you get less coke, so what's the point in ordering a coke anyway? (Oh, and go to McDonald's next time. You'll get more than one ice cube. Even during winter when it's farking freezing out there. Bastards.)


Erm, you get the exact same amount. I always got the can unless I was in some place like Burger King or McDonalds. Every Doner shop I ate at just give you the can, same with sit down restaurants.
2013-07-18 03:18:54 PM  
1 vote:
Brits are such pussies. They whine about literally everything possible. Except for standing in line. Which is apparently like the British equivalent of Paradise.

Also, for you Canucks, your little winter breezes aren't cold. They're laughable. I'm a Texan and I spent 6 months in Adak...in the winter, most often in the water.

It's not hard to adjust your body to wildly varying thermal cycles, you just can't be a fatass who sits on their ass all day.
2013-07-18 03:08:10 PM  
1 vote:
Just checked outside and it is 90f degrees, which is uncommonly cool for this time of year in the afternoon.  When are ya frickin limeys gonna learn to put ice in yer tea?

/posted while sitting in front of my 30 year old box fan.
2013-07-18 03:07:19 PM  
1 vote:

TheOmni: It's like when we make fun of the southern states for being pretty much completely shut down whenever they get about an inch of snow. There are a variety of reasons why their infrastructure isn't set up to handle snow, and a population with a lack of personal experience handling it also complicates matters.

None of this makes it not hilarious or mockable though.


Indeed. British water heaters tend to work on demand and can be as small as toaster ovens. Much of their plumbing runs outside of the house, as many quite functional houses predate the widespread invention of plumbing. So you can imagine the effect of a cold snap longer than, say, 24 hours. Hint: It involves a lot of snapping.

All of Britain is north of 50N. It is moderated by the Gulf Stream into a sort of Goldilocks zone of frequent rains and temperatures in what North Americans would consider a very narrow range of 0-20C. (It was 36C/98F in Toronto yesterday, by contrast, and we are just south of 44N). If the weather starts to swing in accordance with the high latitude, and/or the Gulf Stream moves or ceases, Britain could be Siberia pretty quickly, with France being Southern Siberia, I suppose...or Northern Saskatchewan.

They wouldn't do well. Most of them don't have words for "snow shovel, road salt and tire chains".
2013-07-18 03:00:48 PM  
1 vote:
TFA says workers are more likely to encounter air conditioning at work than at home, then whines about workers looking longingly outside and hoping for a siesta.
2013-07-18 02:55:11 PM  
1 vote:

thisiszombocom: London has the same latitude as calgary, and similar to Saskatoon . Seems like it should be colder there


The North Atlantic Current apparently has a lot to do with keeping its temperature more mild than its latitude would suggest.
2013-07-18 02:50:48 PM  
1 vote:

bingethinker: It's "only" 84 here in Ottawa, but the humidity is 85%, so it's uncomfortable.

Come visit Canada in January, we'll see who can't handle the temperature.


I detect Canadian weather-brag.

Yes we all know its cold as farkity farkin fark up there in winter.  We also know you sometimes get 80 quintillion metric shiattonnes of snow, twice a day, uphill both ways.

Oh, and here in the US, we're idiots and weaklings because we don't have 3 snowplows and 47 loads of salt for every man, woman and child. And we wreck our cars in wholesale fashion after 15 minutes of sleet.

But you guys are SO NICE about pointing it out.

The point is, if the weather is not what you generally are equipped for, ITS NEWS TO US SO CLIMB BACK IN YOUR FARKING IGLOO AND EAT YOUR GODDAMNED ROAST PEGUIN.
2013-07-18 02:49:38 PM  
1 vote:
Wow. Britain really is a shiathole place to live. I thought that was just a stereotype.
2013-07-18 02:48:07 PM  
1 vote:

teylix: amindtat: #11  [www.journeywoman.com image 250x248]

man when i visited europe last late summer, i missed ice cubes badly. why are those losers stuck in the middle ages? give me my AC and ice cubes any day.


Amen to that! It's damn hard to find an ice cube in Germany. One time, when I got a coke, I was given one ice cube and a room temperature soda.... sigh... The waitress thought I was insane when I explained to her to FILL the entire glass with ice.

However, when I do visit, the whole family buys "ice cube bags" just for me (they think I'm nuts) Basically plastic bags that have little "pockets" You fill them with water tie them off and stuff them in the freezer and you get little round ice cubes. They start making me ice two weeks before I show up. It's quite comical.
2013-07-18 02:46:00 PM  
1 vote:

TheOmni: It's like when we make fun of the southern states for being pretty much completely shut down whenever they get about an inch of snow. There are a variety of reasons why their infrastructure isn't set up to handle snow, and a population with a lack of personal experience handling it also complicates matters.

None of this makes it not hilarious or mockable though.


Well, I grew up in the South, and now I live in the North.  They do mock people, but you know what I noticed?  They can't drive on snow or ice, either.  So at least Southerners have the sense to stay inside when they shouldn't be driving.

We had a "heat wave" the past two summers (this year was more moderate), and people were dying when the temperature reached 90 degrees!  Oh, my, how terrible.  So the whining goes both ways.
2013-07-18 02:45:45 PM  
1 vote:
So what they're saying is the Brits are inferior as a species and a tiny bit of variance of climate is killing them?  Hooray evolution!

Americans and our vastly superior genes mock and ridicule the wankers
2013-07-18 02:44:15 PM  
1 vote:

coldcuts: Maybe in the early 1900's.  Modern railways use stretched rails to account for expansion.  I would hope even British rails would account for temps to occasionally go into the high 80s.


They don't account for leaves on the track, which is an annual occurrence. Why would you expect them to account for the one year in fifty with good weather?
2013-07-18 02:41:47 PM  
1 vote:
"On railways there are traditionally expansion joints, using small gaps in the rail. But once the rail has expanded to fill those gaps you are in trouble.  "

Maybe in the early 1900's.  Modern railways use stretched rails to account for expansion.  I would hope even British rails would account for temps to occasionally go into the high 80s.
2013-07-18 02:40:07 PM  
1 vote:
Air Con was a pretty sweet Nic Cage movie.
2013-07-18 02:39:12 PM  
1 vote:
I still disagree that 85 degrees is a heat wave. So they're excuses are invalid.

/92 here right now
2013-07-18 02:33:29 PM  
1 vote:

TheOmni: None of this makes it not hilarious or mockable though.

ZAZ [TotalFark]
2013-07-18 01:47:02 PM  
1 vote:
Last week, 200 ScotRail services were cancelled or held up because of the heat. In temperatures of 30C (86F) the rails themselves can easily reach 50C.
The UK network uses continuous welded rail as this is safer, stronger and allows trains to travel more quickly over it, Network Rail says.


In Massachusetts commuter rail slows to 30 mph when temperature reaches 90. The state (country?) has not historically been a fan of continuous welded rail. Some has been installed over the past 15 years.

4. Roads don't handle heat well either

A summer or two ago there was a story about Midwest concrete slabs buckling. One created a ramp and launched a bike.
 
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