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No respite from Europe heatwave

No respite from Europe heatwave

Almost 700 firefighters and 10 water-dumping aircraft are fighting the biggest outbreak, which has burned 1000ha near the town of Monchique in the southern Algarve region. Authorities deployed 130 soldiers to help with the efforts.

"I don't want to say anything bad but yesterday, while I was watching TV, I thought the same could happen here but I'm praying it doesn't", said Eva Stigliano, a Greek tourist visiting Portugal for the third time.

Over 700 firefighters were still battling a forest fire near the Portuguese town of Monchique in the southern Algarve region, a popular tourist destination. TV footage showed burned out cars and charred buildings the villagers had left behind. Picture taken August 3, 2018, in this picture obtained from social media. That blaze has since been put out.

Francisca Serrano, a souvenir seller, added "we are used to high temperatures, but it seems the air doesn't flow and that makes it hard to breathe".

However, not all of the United Kingdom will experience clear blue skies - much of Scotland and Northern Ireland will start the week with some rain, and fresher, cooler weather is expected to stretch from the middle of the week into the weekend across the country, with maximum temperatures likely to dip to the mid-20Cs on Wednesday. The weather service IPMA predicted 42C in the capital on Sunday and a maximum of 44C in the central-east interior.

Red health alerts for extreme heat have been issued for more than half the country, with thermometers passing 46C (114.8F) on Saturday. Temperatures reached 33 Celsius in west London on Friday but are forecast to drop going into next week.




The heatwave kick-started towards the end of May earlier this year, and has become one hottest United Kingdom summers on record. Wheat fields have been devastated across northern Europe, driving up prices.

Since Friday, four French nuclear reactors in three power plants near the Rhine and the Rhone Rivers, including Fessenheim, have had to be temporarily shut down.

Two people were injured and six homes damaged in a separate forest fire near Madrid on Friday, they said.

The stifling conditions played a part in the deaths of two men from heatstroke - one in Barcelona and the other in the southern Spanish region of Murcia - according to Spanish authorities.

Sweden and Poland have warned against swimming in the Baltic Sea due to a huge bloom of toxic algae caused by hot temperatures.

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