Hanoi, Vietnam, has been in the grip of a heatwave. Photo: iStock

The city of Hanoi in Vietnam experienced a record high temperature of 38.9 degrees Celsius earlier this month, at a time when the average should be 24, as a heatwave swept across the region.

On April 20, Hanoi recorded 38.9 degrees Celsius, or 102 degrees Fahrenheit, the VN Express reported. This broke the record for the previous highest temperature, recorded at 38.5 degrees Celsius in April 1919.

According to Nguyen Van Huong, the head meteorologist at the National Center for Hydro-Meteorological Forecasting, temperatures in Northern Vietnam increased by two to three degrees than the average temperature range of 23-34 degrees Celsius since early April 2019.

He said that global warming, urbanization and El Nino – part of a routine climate pattern – were causing the extreme heat. He added that the average temperatures this summer would be 0.5 to 1 degree above average.

The weather office warned that Vietnam will have more heatwaves in the coming months. The northern and central parts will be hotter between April and August.

The extreme heat has also affected neighboring countries like Cambodia, Laos and Thailand.

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