Connect with us

News

Wildfires rage in France and Spain amid heat wave, while the UK faces its hottest day ever

Raging wildfires have scorched thousands of hectares of forest in France and Spain, while Britain is set to face its hottest day on record amid a searing heat wave.

Published

on

Thousands of hectares of forest have been destroyed by raging wildfires in France and Spain, while the UK is set to experience its hottest day on record.

The worst of the blazes have hit France’s southwest region of Gironde.

The prefecture of Nouvelle-Aquitaine and Gironde announced on Twitter that 14,300 hectares (35,000 acres) of land had burned and that 24,000 people had been evacuated from the area as of Monday.

To combat the blazes, authorities have sent 1,700 firefighters to the scene. At least 12 firefighters have been treated for minor injuries since the start of the operation, according to a Gironde regional fire and rescue service spokesperson.

Advertisement

Reuters reported that wildfires engulfed Spain’s central Castile and Leon and northern Galicia provinces on Sunday. Firefighters in Mijas, a town in the province of Málaga’s southeast, kept the blaze under control and said residents who had been evacuated could return to their homes.

According to data from the national meteorological institute, sweltering temperatures in Portugal have exacerbated a drought that began before the heat wave. Drought conditions were already widespread on the mainland as of the end of June.

Intensity reaches a peak.

Western Europe is bracing itself for the worst of the heat wave early this week.

Advertisement

According to France’s national weather agency, the country’s monthly minimum temperature records could be broken on Monday. According to Météo-France, there are nine locations in France where monthly minimum temperatures are expected to be broken, including Rostrenen in Brittany.

On Monday, temperatures are expected to reach 42 degrees Celsius (108 degrees Fahrenheit), prompting Météo-France to issue a heatwave red alert for a total of 15 departments in western and southwestern France. A total of 51 additional regions have been issued an orange alert, with residents urged to stay indoors from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. local time.

A record-breaking heat wave is expected to hit France today, and Météo-France says it’s unlikely that the temperature will fall enough before nightfall to prevent this from happening.

Only eight days have occurred since May in which the average daily temperature has been lower than the average summer temperature in France. Météo-France data show that for the next 39 days, the national daily average temperature will be higher than the average for this time of year between 1991 and 2020.

Advertisement

Reuters also reported that Spain’s weather agency had issued an extreme heat warning Sunday. The northern regions of Aragon, Navarra, and La Rioja were predicted to experience temperatures of 42 degrees Celsius (108 degrees Fahrenheit). The weather service predicted that the heat wave would end on Monday, but it also issued a “abnormally high” temperature warning.

According to EU Commission researchers, nearly half of Europe’s landmass, including the United Kingdom, is “at risk” of drought. It was noted by the Joint Research Centre that the “winter-spring precipitation deficit… was exacerbated by early heatwaves in May and June” in Europe, making the drought “critical.”

the future of water supply may be “compromised,” according to the report.

Hottest day in British history

Advertisement

Across Europe, the UK is bracing itself for the “hottest day in UK history,” a senior weather official has said. Due to the high temperatures, the Met Office issued its first-ever red “extreme heat” warning on Friday.

Tuesday is expected to be even hotter than Monday, according to the Met Office’s CEO, Penelope Endersby.

There is a greater chance of 40-degree and above temperatures tomorrow, according to Endersby, who spoke on BBC Radio Monday.

It’s not out of the question that he could get to 41 at some point. To be on the safe side, we’ve even included some 43s in the model.

Advertisement

Endersby said the Met Office will keep an eye on the possibility of a drought in the coming months, despite the fact that extreme temperatures are not expected to continue past Tuesday.

We’re expecting a 10 or 12 degree drop in temperature overnight and into Wednesday,” she said, adding, “Our attention will turn to drought and when we might see any rain, and we’re not seeing any significant rain coming up.”

Xiaofei Xu was in Paris reporting on the situation. Both Zahid Mahmood and Sana Noor Haq were based in London and contributed to this report. CNN’s Renee Bertini, James Frater and Sharon Braithwaite contributed reporting to this post.

Create a CNN.com account to receive additional news and newsletters.

Advertisement
Advertisement