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Temperatures soar to over 40C in Europe- 4th August

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Across Europe countries are experiencing the most intense heat wave since 2003, where residents and tourists are being warned to enjoy the sun carefully and safely as scientists warm it may get worse.

A number of countries including Italy, Switzerland, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Croatia and Serbia have been warned by authorities they are on red alert, whereas parts of France and Spain have been put onto amber alert.

Emergency services in these countries have advised that people stay indoors in the afternoon, avoid long journeys where possible, drink enough fluids and listen for emergency advice from health officials. The extreme temperatures are putting infrastructure at risk therefore people have been warned not to travel unless it is essential.

The heat wave is projected to stay until next Wednesday, which may fuel wildfires and draughts in some parts of Europe, like it has done on previous occasions.

With temperatures already reaching up to 43°C, locals and holiday makers may be unhappy for discover that temperatures are due to increase again over the weekend, with some places hitting 46°C or possibly higher in Italy and parts of the Balkans.

Currently Europe’s warmest temperature on record is at Athens in 1977; however temperatures this week have been 10-15°C higher than the average at this time of year, which may as a result cause fatalities.

Experts fear Europe could see similar scenes during this heat wave as they did during the 2003 heat wave, where over 20,000 people died from heat-related casualties.

The increased temperatures which are currently being experiences in these South European countries may continue to be an issue in future years as temperatures continue to increase year after year. This has prompted French researchers to warn that some of the most popular tourist destinations in France may become significantly tougher in future years.

These researchers have claimed that with human influence, heat waves will increase in frequency, duration and intensity and warn that by 2100 summers could be 6-13°C hotter, with some places in Europe exceeding 50°C.

Countries such as Italy have really felt the effects if the heat wave this week with a number of wild fires - one of which caused the death of a 79 year old woman, as well as a 15% increase in the use of emergency services and the heat wave has exacerbated the country’s worst drought in 60 years with an alarming affect on the country’s crop production.

 

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