Sydney witnesses highest temperature in nearly 8 decades

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The current heatwave sweeping Autralia's New South Wales (NSW) has triggered a total fire ban across the state. Severe fire warnings were also issued for the greater Sydney area.

SYDNEY, Jan. 8 (Xinhua) -- Sydney just experienced its hottest day in 79 years with temperature hitting as high as 47.3 degrees Celsius on Sunday, making it the hottest place on Earth.

The Harbor City's infrastructure was partly paralyzed, with some 3,000 houses left without power and traffic between Sydney and Melbourne delayed.

People were rushing to the beaches for coolness, making lifesavers busy responding to critical situations across the NSW.

The temperature was just shy of the 47.8 degrees Celsius recorded in 1939, an all-time high for this area.

"43 degrees but probably 150 on court when started," she tweeted after dropping out. "I' m sorry to the fans. I think it's 1st time in my career I retired a match..it says it all."

The scorcher even forced French tennis player Kristina Mladenovic to retire midway through Sunday's match of the Sydney International tennis tournament.