Published: Sun, August 05, 2018
Money | By Wilma Wheeler

At peak of European heatwave, Portugal battles wildfire, power outage

At peak of European heatwave, Portugal battles wildfire, power outage

That could push them above Europe's record high of 48C, set in Athens in 1977.

Met Office meteorologist Aidan McGivern commented on the conditions: "A dry and warm one for most places this weekend, but there will be cloudy skies at times in the north west and it will be damp as well occasionally for Scotland's islands and highlands".

Residents and tourists in Portugal and Spain stayed in the shade or flocked to the beach Saturday as southern Europe sweltered in a heat wave that has produced near-record temperatures and threatens to stick around for days to come.

In France the first Saturday in August is called "Black Saturday", with holiday traffic jams on all routes, this year accompanied by extreme heat.

Although holidaymakers might normally expect heat in the mid-30 degrees Celsius in these countries, there is the potential for extreme temperatures - edging towards 50 degrees Celsius.

Portugal's highest temperature ever recorded was in the southeastern city of Amareleja, which hit 47.4C (117F) in 2003.

A record heatwave has been registered across Europe, including countries in the north. Temperatures in London, for example, are expected to rise to 33 degrees on Friday.

Amid a scorching-hot summer spanning nearly all of the northern hemisphere, Portugal and Spain are preparing for temperatures that could break not only the national record - but a record for the entire continent.

Eight places across Portugal have seen the mercury reach near record highs, peaking at around 47 degrees in one region.

The previous record highs in both Spain and Portugal were just over 47C.

Temperatures are being driven higher by a hot air mass moving northward from Africa.

Heatstroke kills three people in Spain as the most severe heatwave grips the continent with temperatures touching a scorching 45 degrees Celsius in some areas.


The national meteorological service of Spain has announced a weather warning until at least Sunday, saying that the heat wave is "a particularly intense and sustained in the South-West". The country went on high alert in an effort to prevent a repeat of the worst fires in history a year ago, which killed 114 people.

According to him, temperatures in the Iberian peninsula may be higher than those recorded in the last 40 years.

The small Budakeszi game reserve outside the Hungarian capital Budapest said it was helping its animals cope with the heat with iced fruit and a diet with less meat and more nutrients.

Like this: