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Heatwave: Germany braced for hottest day ever as temperatures set to top 40C

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Heatwave: Germany braced for hottest day ever as temperatures set to top 40C
Bathers in Passau, Bavaria, cool down in Wednesday's extreme heat. Photo: DPA
08:38 CEST+02:00
Germany was set for its hottest day ever on Thursday amid a Europe wide heatwave, following a record-breaking Wednesday.

Temperatures are expected to exceed 40C in western parts of the country.

It came after a new record high temperature was set on Wednesday, the German Meteorological Service said.

The high of 40.5C was recorded in Geilenkirchen, north of Aachen in North Rhine-Westphalia, which tops the previous high of 40.3 degrees recorded in Bavaria in 2015. 

The reading, tweeted out by Germany's DWD weather service, was not taken at one of its own measuring stations, but one operated by NATO. That meant it had to be double-checked, a DWD forecaster told DPA.

On Thursday afternoon the record was confirmed. But it is likely that this record could be smashed on Thursday, the peak of the heatwave.

The DWD said in a tweet that they had reviewed the reading and confirmed a new record of 40.5C recorded in Geilenkirchen on July 24th.

READ ALSO: 'Heatwave could go down in history': Germany faces temperatures up to 41C

On Wednesday they had said it was an "expected new temperature record in Germany". "Tomorrow (Thursday) it will be a little hotter regionally", the DWD explained in a tweet which included the top 10 hottest places in Germany.  "Today's record may only last one day."

Heat warnings issued

On Thursday, temperatures were expected to be between 32 and 37C in some areas, and in the hottest areas in the western part of the country it could top 40C again.

Forecasters said temperatures below 30C will only be found on the Baltic and North Sea coasts or on the mountains above 1000 meters. The highest temperatures of the day are usually reached at about 5pm.

Peak heat warnings have been issued by the DWD.

The service tweeted a map with the temperatures from Wednesday and the expected highs for Thursday, showing just hot Germany will be.

On Wednesday, Germany sweltered in the heat. Overnight temperatures remained high – hardly dropping below 24C in western spots, like the Rhine-Main region, according to the DWD.

Meteorologists are blaming a weather front, dubbed 'Yvonne', which stretches from the central Mediterranean to Scandinavia, hanging over Europe.

READ ALSO: Is it ever legally too hot to go to work or school in Germany?

Bonn, Germany's former capital, saw the mercury hit 39C, while in Saarbrücken it was 40.2C.

Due to the heatwave, rivers are suffering from low water. Shrinking levels prompted authorities to ban hotel ships from using a 60km stretch of the Danube river near Vilshofen in Bavaria.

Meanwhile, the heatwave is set to keep other parts of Europe sizzling. On Thursday France's weather service predicted between 37 and 42C, which would likely break Paris' heat record set in 1947.

 
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