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Europe braces for 'potentially dangerous' heatwave

A potentially record-breaking heatwave is forecast to grip much of continental Europe next week, with temperatures in cities from Spain to Germany expected to exceed 32C and climb to more than 38C or even 40C in the hottest areas.

The combination of a storm stalled over the Atlantic and high pressure over central Europe would pull very hot air from Africa northward, leading to a “potentially dangerous heatwave over a large portion of western and central Europe”, forecaster AccuWeather said.

In France, temperatures of between 35C and 40C were expected across most of the country except Brittany from Monday, Météo-France said, and were unlikely to fall below 20C overnight. Meteorologists in Germany said there was a 50% chance of temperatures hitting 40C, possibly breaking the national record of 40.3C set in Bavaria in 2015.

Heat wave 2018
All in all, Europe will be struck by a "potentially dangerous" heat wave next week. A heat wave also scorched Europe in 2018, resulting in multiple deaths in Spain and Portugal and drought conditions in Germany and Sweden. The continent experienced its hottest August on record the same year, according to the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts' Copernicus Climate Change Service.

The World Weather Attribution initiative associated the 2018 European heat wave with climate change, saying, "the probability to have such a heat or higher is generally more than two times higher today than if human activities had not altered climate." quoted the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, that stated that 2018 was the world's fourth hottest year on record, after 2016, 2015 and 2017.

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