Germany expects heat wave of up to 40 degrees
For weeks, the countries of southern Europe have been suffering from drought and heat. A heat wave with peaks of up to 40 degrees is now approaching Germany in the coming days. Lots of sunshine spread across the country on Sunday, the German weather service (DWD) said on Saturday.
Only in northern Germany denser clouds could pass. According to meteorologists, the highest temperatures will be reached in the southwest. Here they are climbing from 25 to 31 degrees. In the north and east, the highs will be between 20 and 24 degrees. Overnight through Monday it will cool down to 16-8 degrees.
The week starts sunny with loose sails. According to the DWD, temperatures will climb to 29 to 34 degrees on Monday, while they are expected to reach 36 degrees in the west and southwest. The coasts, however, were spared the heat. In these regions, meteorologists expect 20 to 25 degrees.
On Tuesday, the DWD expects the preliminary peak of the heat wave. In the southwest and west, the 40 degree mark may be cracked. In the northeast, the maximum values are between 30 and 34 degrees. During the night to Wednesday, showers could move to the far west and southwest, individual thunderstorms are not excluded.
Meanwhile, heat and fires continue to hold parts of western and southern Europe firmly: in France, Spain and Portugal, firefighters continued to battle several wildfires on Saturday. In southwestern France alone, fires have destroyed more than 9,000 hectares of forest since Tuesday, authorities said, and around 12,000 people have had to be brought to safety so far.
Near the Dune du Pilat near Bordeaux, the highest moving sand dune in Europe, new fires have broken out near the beach, according to the mayor of the small seaside resort of Teste-de-Buch. In the area of the commune itself, firefighters said they were able to contain the flames but have not yet been able to bring them under control.
Further inland, near the town of Landiras, the situation remains tense. There, according to the prefecture, the flames have destroyed an additional thousand hectares since Friday evening alone. However, the prosecutor’s office suspects arson to be the cause.
In the Italian northern Adriatic resort of Bibione, several tourists had to flee into the sea due to a forest fire, where they were rescued by the coast guard. The fire in the area popular with German holidaymakers broke out on Friday afternoon, according to media reports.
Whether Germans were among those rescued, the Coast Guard could not confirm on Saturday when initially asked. Several firefighters as well as a firefighting helicopter fought the flames on the border between the regions of Veneto and Friuli-Venezia Giulia. On Saturday, the operation continued.
Meanwhile, the wildfire that has been raging since Friday on the resort island of Crete, south of the port city of Rethymno, was brought under control on Saturday morning. Greek firefighters said the battle against the flames had been going on all night. Six villages were evacuated. Although the fire approached the settlements, no houses were damaged, the mayor of the municipality, Agios Vasilios, told Skai station on Saturday.
At last count, 110 firefighters with 33 fire platoons were on duty in the area. At daybreak, five firefighting helicopters also resumed their work. Stormy winds in the area were problematic, constantly reigniting and chasing flames
Meanwhile, the death toll in Spain from the heatwave has risen to 360, including the death of a 60-year-old municipal cleaner at work on Saturday due to the heat, Catalan daily La Vanguardia reported.
The Maghreb is also hard hit by the consequences of the heat: in Morocco, one person has now died in forest fires. Hundreds of residents of northern regions were saved from the flames in several villages, Al-Jazeera television reported on Saturday.
Forest fires have been raging for days near the coastal town of Larache, among other places, Moroccan news portal Hespress reported. Hundreds of hectares of forest have already fallen victim to the flames, he added. Morocco is currently experiencing high temperatures of over 40 degrees. According to the media, the drought and strong winds had favored the spread of the fires.
Photo by Jared Rice