A warm air mass from north Africa has caused temperatures to skyrocket into the 40s C throughout the Iberian Peninsula challenging all-time heat records in Europe.
Lisbon, Portugal set a new maximum for 04 August at 44°C and even overnight lows are barely falling below 30°C.
Hundreds of firefighters are battling wildfires in the Algarve region and in neighbouring Spain.
The water in some rivers has become so overheated that fish are dying on a mass scale.
Forecasters say the heat is moving east and will affect France and Germany over the next few days.
The hottest temperature ever recorded in Europe is 48°C (118.4°F) set in Athens, Greece in July 1977.
Five Islands, Colchester County, NS, 24 July 2018 (Dearing)
July was definitely hot and often humid in Greater Moncton with Environment Canada confirming it was the warmest since 1940.
The average daily temperature was 21.4 C which is 2.6 degrees above normal.
An official heat wave in the first week was followed by numerous heat warnings being issued.
The thermometer climbed to 30 C or higher on 11 days during July and never dropped below 18 C during 7 overnights.
Rainfall was more than 30 percent below normal and much of the precipitation fell during thunderstorms.
JULY 2018 ALMANAC (at Greater Moncton Int’l Airport, 1981-2010)
Average HIGH 27.8°C
Average LOW 14.8°C
AVERAGE 21.4°C (about 2.6 degrees ABOVE normal)
Extreme HIGH 34.2°C (05 July)
Extreme LOW 8.7°C (13 July)
RAINFALL 63.0 mm (more than 30 percent BELOW normal)
(Data courtesy Environment Canada)
Forecast highs in the UK for 27 July 2018 (Met Office)
The British, like Canadians, often give names to extreme weather events and ‘Furnace Friday’ is a fine example.
Meteorologists were expecting the all-time heat record of 38.5 C from 2003 would fall yesterday but thunderstorms rolled through and cooled things down.
Nevertheless, the UK Met Office reports a maximum of 34.7 C at Tibenham Airfield, Norfolk while it reached 35.3 C in Faversham, Kent – the hottest high of 2018 so far.
The heat wave has turned grass brown, triggered water restrictions, disrupted rail services and prompted a warning from officials to stay out of the sun.
Thundershower as cold front sweeps Greater Moncton, 06 July 2018 (91.9 The Bend)
The passing of a cold front led to showers and thundershowers in Southeast New Brunswick today marking the end of hot, humid weather.
Environment Canada has noted Greater Moncton endured an official heat wave by definition with three straight days of at least 32°C.
The trio of record highs this week:
JULY 3rd : 31.6 C (new), 31.0 C (old record 1984)
JULY 4th : 33.4 C (new), 31.6 C (old record 2013)
JULY 5th : 34.2 C (new), 32.7 C (old record 2013)
The hotspot in New Brunswick on 05 July was a scorching 36.0 C at Miramichi and not far behind was 35.5 C at Kouchibouguac National Park.
As the heat subsides in Eastern Canada, hot weather is building in Western Canada with an impressive record high today of 39.3 C at Val Marie, Saskatchewan.
A double rainbow after brief rain shower over Moncton, 04 July 2018 (Dearing)
Temperatures across Eastern Canada from Ontario to the Maritimes continued to soar into the 30s C with humidex values above 40.
Authorities in Quebec say at least 18 people have died, all over age 50, as a warm, humid air mass lingered over the province.
Record highs have been recorded in New Brunswick with a new maximum of 31.6 C at the Greater Moncton International Airport on Tuesday (beating 31.0 C from 1984) and 33.4 C today (beating 31.4 C from 1983).
The hotspot in the province was 34.1 C at St. Stephen.
Thanks to high pressure and a jet stream surging north, New Brunswick will feel the heat over the next two days.
Greater Moncton is expecting a high of 30 C today and 31 C tomorrow with humidex values between 30 and 36.
Environment Canada says the warmest conditions will be from mid-afternoon to early evening and precautions should be taken in extreme heat.
The passing of a cold front this weekend will bring temperatures closer to normal.
Crowded Bondi Beach during heat wave in Sydney, NSW, Australia, 07 Jan 2018 (European Pressphoto Agency)
A recent heat wave in Australia was so severe that asphalt melted on some highways, firefighters had to battle wildfires and bats fell out of trees after literally boiling to death.
The daytime high reached a scorching 47.3 C in a western suburb of Sydney on Sunday which was the hottest since 1939 and while Melbourne was cooler, the thermometer still climbed to 40 C.
Beaches were so crowded in Sydney, there was virtually no room to move around.
While it is the height of summer Down Under, the normal January high in the New South Wales capital city is 27 C with an overnight low of 20 C.
Sunset over San Francisco, CA, USA, 01 Sept 2017 (Twitter)
San Francisco rarely suffers from hot weather which is why many residents are struggling to stay cool during a heat wave since most homes don’t have air conditioners.
The U.S. National Weather Service says the thermometer climbed to an all-time record-breaking 41.1 C (106 F) on 01 September and another record of 38.9 C (102 F) was set the following day.
Those sizzling highs are a far cry from the average of 21 C for the northern California city.
Numerous wildfires in the region have produced smoke and haze which has added to air quality concerns.
The heat has also stretched northward to Oregon, Washington State and British Columbia where temperatures could exceed 30 C on Vancouver Island.
Temperatures across southern Europe have been so hot in recent days – climbing to more than 40 C in some areas – the heat wave has been called “Lucifer”.
Several deaths have been reported and severe weather warnings have been issued in Spain, France, Italy and the Balkan States.
Serbia’s capital Belgrade reached a scorching 39 C and train service in the southern part of the country was halted after rail tracks buckled in the extreme heat.
By contrast, northern Europe has been much cooler and wetter with the thermometer dropping as low as 4 C in the Scottish Highlands.
Cooling off in the Elbow River, SW Calgary, AB, 27 July 2017 (Postmedia/G. Young)
Environment Canada issued heat warnings for most of Alberta along with parts of Saskatchewan and Manitoba this week in the wake of sizzling high temperatures.
The weather office says a daytime maximum of 30 C or higher could pose an elevated risk of heat-related illnesses and residents should avoid outdoor activities until cooler hours of the day.
Temperatures could climb to 33 C as far north as Thompson and almost 30 C in Churchill along the Hudson Bay coast.
Forecasters say the extreme heat will continue this weekend but a slight cool down is expected early next week.