Summer heat sizzles Europe

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.

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Furnace Friday

HotUK

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.

Heat wave claims lives

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.

Heat warnings issued in the West

Heat west

Weather watches, warnings, statements re: heat and thunderstorms, 08 July 2017 (Environment Canada)

A strong ridge of high pressure over Western Canada has pushed the thermometer into record high territory for British Columbia and Alberta.

On 07 July, dozens of communities set new maximum temperatures with the highest at 39.4 C in Warfield and 38.3 C in Nelson but the hot spot in Canada was Garden River in northern Alberta at 40.3 C.

The major cities were warm too with Calgary reaching 33 C and Edmonton 30 C.

Heat warnings have been issued for most of Alberta and parts of Saskatchewan where temperatures will be near 29 C or higher for the next few days and residents are urged to take precautions.