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WEATHER

Spain roasts in sizzling heat with temperatures up to 44C

A heat wave enveloped much of Spain on Sunday, driving temperatures to extreme levels and sending locals and tourists scurrying for shade and cooling waters.

Spain roasts in sizzling heat with temperatures up to 44C

National weather office AEMET issued heat warnings for most of the country, with the thermometer expected to rise above 40C (104F) in Madrid and the southern city of Seville for the second day running.

Spain’s first bout of extreme heat of the year is forecast to spread east on Monday before easing. Only a sliver of Spain’s northern Atlantic coast will be spared.

Some sought respite from the scorching heat in the air conditioned galleries of Madrid’s Prado museum, whose collection includes works by
Rembrandt, Rubens and El Greco.

“We thought this would be a good plan for a day like today,” said Rosa Alfageme, 44, waiting in line to enter the museum with her husband and six-year-old daughter.

“It’s like this every year, we almost forget,” said Alfageme, adding that the family does not have air-conditioning at home.

READ ALSO: Climate crisis: Spain records hottest year in 2020

Others headed to the nearby Retiro park, home to a large artificial lake, or to municipal swimming pools.

Swimming pools overrun in heatwave

Tickets for all the capital’s 19 outdoor swimming pools were sold out on Sunday. Capacity was limited due to virus safety measures.

The authorities advised people to drink water frequently, wear light clothes and avoid prolonged exposure to the sun.

Meteorologists said the temperature could climb as high as 44C in the Guadalquivir valley near Seville on Sunday.

Spain’s highest temperature on record is 49C.

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WEATHER

Italy braces for first heatwave of the year with highs of over 30C

Temperatures are set to rise dramatically across Italy this weekend as the country prepares for its first real heatwave of the year, meteorologists said on Friday.

Italy braces for first heatwave of the year with highs of over 30C

People across Italy are preparing to head to the beach this weekend with unseasonably hot weather predicted to last for several days.

The heatwave is caused by an anticyclone named  ‘Hannibal’ sweeping in from Tunisia and Algeria, bringing hot air currents across the Mediterranean and as far north as Denmark and Poland, reports news agency Ansa.

Temperatures are forecast to rise above 32-33°C in parts of the Italian north including Veneto, Trentino Alto Adige, and Emilia Romagna, before the heatwave expands towards the centre and south of the country over the course of the weekend.

The weather is already 8°C above the seasonal average for this time of year, according to Antonio Sanò, founder of the Italian weather site IlMeteo.it, and temperatures could rise by as much as 10°C.

READ ALSO: From Venice to Mont Blanc, how is the climate crisis affecting Italy?

In a typical year these kinds of highs wouldn’t be seen until July, Sanò said.

The incoming heatwave will be particularly humid as the anticyclone is carrying moisture from the Mediterranean sea, according to IlMeteo.

However, the relative cool of the Mediterranean basin at this time of year will contain the heat and keep the temperatures from rising into the high 30s, as would happen if the same type of weather event occurred in August.

READ ALSO: Nine in 10 Italians ‘want more action on climate crisis’, new study finds

The heatwave will stretch over the weekend and continue into next week, peaking on Tuesday, according to weather reports.

Patchy thunderstorms typical of midsummer weather are anticipated in the Alps and the Po Valley, while the centre-south is set to experience hot and sunny conditions bar some isolated storms in the mountains of Abruzzo on Sunday.

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