Koreans turn to ice vests and hot soup in record Seoul heat

Koreans turn to ice vests and hot soup in record Seoul heat

South Korea's capital city of Seoul has recorded its hottest ever temperature at 39C (102F). More than 28 people have died and 2,266 have suffered heat-related conditions as a result of a sweltering heatwave, according to authorities. Some are beating the heat in pools and fountains, while others have turned to more creative methods - including "ice vests" - in an attempt to cool down. The hot weather is set to continue throughout the week.

President Moon Jae-in has called for the heatwave to be declared a form of natural disaster, a move that would allow victims to claim compensation. The government has also set aside 6bn won ($5.3m; £4m) for city and provincial governments to deal with the effects of the weather. Handheld electric fans are one of the most popular items in Korea this summer, but other less common items like "ice vests" (padded vests full of ice cubes or a cooling gel) and portable "neck fans" have also cropped up.

Drinking hot soup in warm weather might not make sense to you, but it's common for South Koreans to line up for a steaming bowl of chicken and ginseng soup on the hottest days of the year. The "Samgyetang" soup is eaten to boost stamina, and according to one restaurant owner the logic behind it is to "fight fire with fire". "When it's too hot, we eat cold things. Our stomach gets colder but the rest of us stays hot. So we have to make it the same temperature," Choi Mi-hee told Vice magazine.

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