Temperatures soar across Japan

The mercury rose above 35 degrees Celsius for the first time in Japan this year on Wednesday as temperatures surged across wide areas of the country.

The Meteorological Agency says a high-pressure system covered vast areas from Hokkaido to Kyushu, bringing clear skies.

Daytime highs rose to 35.6 degrees in Kurume City, Fukuoka Prefecture; 35.1 degrees in Saga City, Saga Prefecture, and Hita City, Oita Prefecture; and 33.5 degrees in Yamaguchi City, Yamaguchi Prefecture. Central Tokyo recorded 31.1 degrees. Temperatures were 4 to 7 degrees higher than average in many areas.

Temperatures are expected to rise above 30 degrees again on Thursday in western to northern Japan.

Weather officials are urging caution against heatstroke as people are not yet used to the heat. They're advising people to keep hydrated and avoid sunlight as much as possible when outside.

The officials are also advising people to use air conditioning when indoors.