The Met Office said on Friday: “Extraordinary temperatures and probably record-breaking on Monday and then again on Tuesday.” The nights will be exceptionally warm for Britain. This “is likely to have far-reaching effects on people and infrastructure.” The British temperature record is 38.7 degrees – it was measured on 25 July 2019 at the University of Cambridge. Meteorologists expect this value to be exceeded.
Several wildfires in Portugal have been under control for a week. On Friday, the Civil Defense stated that 13 larger fires and dozens of smaller fires broke out there. According to ICNF, the fire destroyed more than 25,000 hectares in just one week – an area the size of about 35,000 football fields. The area destroyed by wildfires this year has so far increased to 38,600 hectares – a 35 percent increase over the previous year as a whole (28,415).
Meanwhile, the inhabitants of Portugal and the many tourists who vacation in the country these days are groaning in the unusually hot weather. On Wednesday, the highest temperature ever recorded in mainland Portugal in July was 47 degrees in Pinhau in the northern Viseu region, according to the Institute of the Sea and Atmosphere (IPMA). The exact value has not been confirmed.
In neighboring holiday country Spain, there was a heat alert in 16 of the 17 autonomous communities on Friday. In the regions of Andalusia in the south and Extremadura in the west of the country, temperatures should rise to 44 and 45 degrees Celsius, respectively, in the shade. Only the Canary Islands off the west coast of Africa survived the sweltering heat. In terms of size and length, Spain’s heatwave will be one of the longest since records began in 1975, the National Weather Service said.
It was said from France that the heat wave was particularly severe and prolonged. The heat warning level was orange in 11 divisions, and temperatures are expected to reach around 40 degrees in some places on Friday. Two major forest fires on the French southern Atlantic coast continued to spread. During Friday night, emergency services evacuated three communities south of Bordeaux. Civil Protection has warned of the danger of a certain fire in the Rhone Valley, where the Mistral winds are likely to sweep dry areas on Friday and Saturday.
Italy has also been suffering from a drought for weeks. So the government declared a state of emergency in five northern districts along the Po River, and others could follow. Wildfires and forest fires happen again and again. The danger still exists in Sicily and Sardinia. The South Tyrol fire brigade faced a large fire in the hiking area near Frawal on Friday night. Authorities have been dealing with several fires in the northern part of Lake Garda since Sunday.
On Friday, the fire brigade announced that it had counted 108 forest fires in Greece within 24 hours. A particularly large fire south of the Cretan port of Rethymno was initially uncontrollable due to strong winds, and the town of Orne was evacuated as a precaution. A fire also broke out in the southeast of Athens, and residents of the settlement of Veriza were advised by SMS to leave the area for the time being. On Saturday, authorities in a number of regions again declared the second-highest warning level for wildfires – including the greater Athens area and several holiday islands.
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