WORLD


Olympics: Preparations heating-up as Tokyo 2020 two-year countdown begins

Baku, July 24, AZERTAC

One of the many challenges Tokyo needs to overcome as it prepares to host the next Summer Olympics is the deadly heat that has in recent weeks left Japan facing a health crisis, according to the Japanese media.

With two years to go until the 2020 Games, the island nation is experiencing one of its hottest summers on record, with the mercury hitting 40 C in central Tokyo on Monday for the first time in history.

If similar temperatures strike during the July 24-Aug. 9 Olympics, the health of athletes, spectators and workers will be at risk during outdoor endurance events such as the marathon, race walking and cycling. If similar temperatures strike during the July 24-Aug. 9 Olympics, the health of athletes, spectators and workers will be at risk during outdoor endurance events such as the marathon, race walking and cycling.

Accordingly, the International Olympic Committee has approved a plan to hold some events early in the morning to avoid the heat, and its inspection team has said all venues will be analyzed to determine what further measures can be taken to mitigate the impact of the high temperatures.

The Japanese parliament has also enacted a law to temporarily move national holidays to coincide with the Opening and Closing Ceremonies to alleviate traffic congestion in the metropolitan area.

Tokyo 2020 will feature a record 339 events in 33 sports, including four - karate, skateboarding, sport climbing and surfing - that are on the program for the first time, and baseball/softball which returns after being excluded from the last two Summer Games.

The Olympic flame is expected to be carried to all 47 prefectures before arriving at the Opening Ceremony on July 24, 2020.

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