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The nation entered the dog days of summer Tuesday as temperatures climbed above 40 degrees Celsius in some areas, prompting authorities to issue a heatstroke warning and encourage the removal of face masks in certain situations.

By 3:20 p.m. Tuesday, temperatures had reached 40.5 C in the cities of Isesaki and Kiryu in Gunma Prefecture, the hottest reading so far this year, while the town of Hatoyama in Saitama Prefecture had hit 40.2 C. Municipalities in Gunma, Tochigi, Toyama, Saitama, Fukushima, Tokyo and Ibaraki registered temperatures around 38 C or 39 C.

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