Europe, Sweltering Under Heat Wave, Tries to Play It Cool Without AC

Remain Indoors, Drink Lots of Fluids, Head North

Tourists in Rome before Lucifer arrived.

By Christian Stampfer on 7 August 2017
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MUNICH—An uncommonly hot summer has caused authorities in 11 central and southern European countries to warn of dangerously high temperatures in recent days, and the heat wave shows no signs of abating.

Visitors and residents in countries that include France, Spain, and Italy are being urged to take precautions amidst the region’s soaring temperatures. The heat wave – nicknamed Lucifer – is the most severe since 2003 and arrived in parallel with uncommonly high temperatures in many parts of the United States including the Pacific Northwest – where air conditioning is shunned roughly to the same extent as in Europe. High temperatures in recent days there were 104° F (40° C) in Seattle, Washington and 107° F (41.6° C) in Portland, Oregon.

Other countries affected by Lucifer include Bosnia, Croatia, Greece, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, and Switzerland, where officials are telling people to remain indoors, avoid long journeys, drink enough water, and heed emergency advice from health officials. In Poland, officials are warning of potential power outages as the country’s electricity demand set a record last Tuesday.

To date, two people have died as a result of the heat, one in Romania and one in Poland, while many more have been hospitalized suffering from sunstroke and other heat-related conditions.

The heat wave is expected to last through at least the middle of the week and temperatures as high as 114° F (46° C) or higher have been forecast for Italy and parts of the Balkans.

A similar heat wave earlier in the summer exacerbated the drought in Italy, which is the worst the country has seen in 60 years, damaged crops in much of Europe and unleashed a spate of wildfires. A wildfire on Kythira, an island southwest of Athens, resulted in the evacuation of an entire village while wildfires in Portugal killed more than 60 people, including 30 motorists who were trapped in their cars.


Some parts of Europe, however, appear to have avoided the unrelenting heat including Austria, Germany, and the United Kingdom, where daytime high temperatures have been downright chilly, at least given the fact that the calendar says August.

In Munich, the overnight low was 55° F (13° C) and forecasters expect midday temperatures of 72° F (22° C) on Monday. The temperature in Berlin is expected to be 53° F (12° C) early Monday morning with a high of 75° F (24° C), while Vienna expects 60° F (16° C) with a high of 79° F (24° C).

In the British Isles, the low temperature in London Sunday night was 52° F (11° C) and forecasters do not expected the thermometer to go above 68° F (20° C) on Monday. The overnight low for Dublin is expected to be 53° F (12° C) with a high Monday of 63° F (17° C).

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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