Deadly 48C heatwave keeps Europe in its grip as countries swelter

Dr Amir gives tips on how to stay safe during UK heatwave

Europe is preparing for a scorching weekend ahead as the relentless Cerberus heatwave tightens its hold on the southern regions of the continent.

With the mercury set to soar even higher, countries are taking precautions to protect their citizens and cope with the blistering conditions.

Italy, already grappling with intense heat, is bracing itself for a second heatwave that is expected to push temperatures a staggering 12 degrees Celsius above the seasonal average in certain areas on Sunday (July 16).

The scorching forecast has prompted five cities in Sicily, Sardinia, and Puglia to issue fresh warnings, advising individuals to avoid venturing out during the midday heat.

These alerts come on the heels of a previous warning from the Italian health ministry, which included ten other cities from Bologna to Rome, emphasising the dangers of the soaring temperatures.

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Meanwhile, Cyprus finds itself in a similar predicament, as a “red alert” has been issued across the country, urging the public to exercise extra caution and refrain from using any machinery that could potentially ignite fires.

The scorching conditions have prompted authorities in the capital city of Nicosia to open a dedicated heat shelter, where more than two dozen elderly people sought refuge to escape the oppressive heat.

Greece, another victim of the sweltering weather, recently witnessed temperatures surpassing 40 degrees Celsius, leaving tourists disgruntled due to the unexpected closure of the iconic Acropolis in Athens.

As the heatwave intensified, authorities were forced to temporarily shut down the historic site between 12pm and 5pm local time.

The Red Cross stepped in, distributing much-needed bottled water to dehydrated visitors waiting in long lines, but many were left disappointed by the last-minute announcement.

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In Spain, the scorching conditions have prompted beachgoers to seek refuge along the coast, as the country experiences a brief respite from its second heatwave of the summer. However, the relief is short-lived, with temperatures expected to climb to a staggering 40 degrees Celsius in at least 12 out of 17 regions.

The southeastern town of Albox bore the brunt of the heatwave, recording a blistering high of 45C on Wednesday (July 13). The Aemet state weather agency has warned that another heatwave is looming, with the highest temperatures yet to come.

As temperatures continue to soar across Europe, creative measures are being employed to combat the scorching conditions. In Croatia, residents have resorted to using mud as a protective barrier against the glaring heat, finding solace in temperatures ranging from 30 to 37 degrees Celsius.

In Rome and Greece, people seeking relief have congregated around numerous fountains, attempting to escape the relentless heat.

The alarming heatwave has caught the attention of Swedish climate activist Greta Thunberg, who took to Twitter to raise awareness about the global heat records being shattered.

Thunberg stressed the urgent need for action, writing: “Last week we experienced the hottest days ever recorded, many days in a row. We are also experiencing record-high sea level temperatures and record-low ice levels. This is an emergency.”

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