France heatwave to worsen with mercury crossing 40 degrees

Paris, Aug 18 (EFE).- The ongoing heatwave in France is expected to intensify until Wednesday, with temperatures likely to exceed 40 degrees Celsius, according to the French National Meteorological Service on Friday.

Meteo France issued an orange alert for at least 19 departments in southern France, covering a fifth of the country.

In several regions of the alerted departments, where the previous night’s minimum temperature did not drop below 20 degrees, the mercury could climb to 38 degrees during the afternoon.

The meteorological service forecast that the next few days will mark the “hottest episode of the summer of 2023,” possibly reaching record levels in intensity and duration for this time of the year.

Meteo France predicted that temperatures will peak between Tuesday and Wednesday, with southeastern France, particularly Languedoc-Roussillon and the lower part of the Rhone valley, recording temperatures of 40 degrees.

Nonetheless, the meteorological department underlined that the temperature during this period will hover 8 to 14 degrees above the usual threshold for this time of the year.

The minimum temperature may not drop below the 20 degrees in most parts of France in this period.

The state electricity provider EDF has cautioned that its two nuclear plants along the Rhone River in eastern France might need to curtail power generation starting this weekend due to the persisting heatwave in the region.

In northern France, the weather service anticipates relatively normal conditions, with temperatures reaching up to 35 degrees.

While in Paris the temperature could touch 33 degrees, and in regions like Brittany and Normandy it might not exceed 25 degrees.

France has witnessed two heatwaves this summer; the first between July 7-13 and the second lasting from July 17 to 26.

In response to the ongoing heatwaves, the French government activated a hotline on Friday to provide assistance to citizens.

”We never activate alerts lightly. The heatwave expected in the coming days will be unusual in its duration and intensity. Let’s adapt all our behaviors accordingly,” stated Health Minister Aurélien Rousseau. EFE


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