THEIR jobs couldn’t be more different.
While Pat Hughes was moulding metal and dealing with extreme heat this week, Peter Wright was packing ice in the cool confines of a storeroom.
Temperatures in Ballarat peaked in the late afternoon yesterday, with the Bureau of Meteorology recording a top of 38.7 degrees at 4.10pm.
It was the second scorcher for the city after the mercury reached 35.2 on Thursday evening. Unsurprisingly, Mr Wright said he was pretty happy to have his position as the storeroom manager at Victoria Ice.
The company, which operates in Ballarat and supplies much of country Victoria with bags of ice, has been flat out for the past couple of weeks.
Director Michael Linnane said he was expecting to move almost 200 tonnes of ice to areas along the Murray River this weekend alone – the same quantity the company sells for the whole month of July.
“We’re right at our peak at the moment with New Year’s and Christmas plus the fact that we’ve got everybody still on holidays,” he said.
“And with water in the lakes, all the caravan parks are at capacity and using lots of ice every day. We’re particularly busy up the river, where the temperatures are set to peak at about 42.”
Victoria Ice has hired more than a dozen extra staff to cope with the increased demand, and at least 10 extra delivery drivers.
But not everyone is trying to cool down this week.
In fact, some are firing up.
Mr Hughes said that despite the weather, he was perfectly happy working as a blacksmith at Sovereign Hill.
And with the heat keeping others at a distance, he even gets a bit of peace and quiet.