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Thursday, August 18, 2022

New temperature record in Britain

LONDON ( Associated Press) – Britain has broken the record for the hottest temperature in its history with a provisional record of 102.4 Fahrenheit (39.1 degrees Celsius) in Charleswood, England.

Great Britain’s previous record was 38.7 C (101.7 F) in 2019.

Unusually hot and dry weather has scorched the continent since last week, sparking fires from Portugal to the Balkans and hundreds of heat-related deaths. Photos of flames on a French beach and even sweaty Britons on beaches have provided a real lesson in the meaning of climate change.

In Britain, transport, public health and schools faced disruptions in a country accustomed to more moderate temperatures.

“Temperatures will be very high throughout the day, before rising to 40 Celsius, perhaps 41 Celsius in isolated places across England in the afternoon,” said Rachel Ayers of the Met Office.

Much of England, from London in the south to Manchester and Leeds in the north, is under the country’s first red alert for extreme heat, meaning even healthy people are at risk of death as dry, hot weather has hit continental Europe. punished for the remainder of the time. The week is moving north.

The thermometer in Santon Downham, eastern England, touched 100.6 degrees Fahrenheit (38.1 degrees Celsius) on Monday, slightly lower than the British record of 101.7 Fahrenheit (38.7 degrees Celsius) set in 2019. I expected Tuesday to be warm.

Average July temperatures in the UK range from a daily high of 70 F (21 C) to a low of 53 F (12 C), and some homes or small businesses have air conditioning.

Many people were battling the heat by staying at home. Traffic on the highways remained below normal on Monday. Trains ran slow, or they didn’t move at all, for fear of distortion in the tracks. London’s King’s Cross station, one of the country’s busiest rail hubs, was empty on Tuesday, with no trains on the bustling East Coast line connecting the capital to the north and Scotland. London’s Luton Airport had to close the runway due to heat damage.

Transport Secretary Grand Shapps said Britain’s infrastructure, some of which was built in Victorian times, “simply was not built to withstand such temperatures, and it would take years to change … With the infrastructure of maybe.”

At least five drownings were reported in the UK in rivers, lakes and reservoirs where people tried to cool off.

Climate experts warn that global warming has increased the frequency of more extreme weather events, with studies showing the chance of temperatures reaching 40°C in the UK now 10 times higher than in the pre-industrial era . Droughts and heat waves associated with climate change have also made fighting fires more difficult.

A heat wave has been sweeping southern Europe since last week and wildfires have raged in Spain, Portugal and France. About 600 heat-related deaths have been reported in Spain and Portugal, where temperatures reached 47 degrees Celsius (117 Fahrenheit) last week.

More than 37,000 people have been evacuated from their homes and vacation spots in the Gironde region of southwestern France since several fires broke out in the region’s dry pine forests on July 12. According to regional officials, the fire has consumed 190 square kilometers (more than 70 square miles) of forest and vegetation.

A third fire broke out on Monday afternoon in the Medoc wine region north of Bordeaux, adding to the pressure on firefighting resources. Five camp areas in this area on the Atlantic coast burned down, around the Arcachon Basin, famous for its oysters and spas.

However, the weather forecast provided some consolation as temperatures were expected to drop along the Atlantic coast on Tuesday and there was a chance of rain towards the end of the day.


Associated Press writer John Leicester in Le Peque, France, contributed to this report.

World Nation News Desk
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