Heatwave to hit Germany with temperatures well above 30C

Dig out your fans... because hot days are coming to Germany.

Heatwave to hit Germany with temperatures well above 30C
People cooling down at Stralsund at the Baltic Sea on Tuesday. Photo: DPA

After the changeable weather of July, the German Weather Service (DWD) says there's likely to be a longer heatwave in the coming days which could well become a historic weather event in parts of the country.

“According to our forecasts, the 30C mark will be exceeded in the Rhineland on Wednesday – and it will probably stay that way until August 13th,” DWD spokesman Andreas Friedrich told DPA.

In the Rhineland there could be nine hot days with temperatures above 30C in a row – without any cooling in between. It's even possible that the thermometer will rise to 35C.

According to the forecast, it will be similarly hot in the Rhine-Main region. For Frankfurt, the meteorologists expect six tropical weather days in a row from Saturday to the following Friday, with temperatures not dropping below 20C.

“This will be an extreme strain,” warned the DWD spokesman. He said that heat warnings were likely to occur in many places across Germany.

In Berlin for example, temperatures above 30C are forecast starting on Friday until the following Thursday.

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

Danger of forest fires

The unusually long heat wave is also characterized by drought, with massive consequences for nature. “The extreme drought in the middle of Germany is threatening to worsen, the danger of forest fires is increasing even further.” Apart from a few thunder storms, no rain is expected.

The hottest day of the year so far in Germany was last Friday July 31st. In Rheinfelden in southern Baden the mercury reached 38.5C.

READ ALSO: Health warnings as Europe swelters under heatwave

And on Saturday, temperatures in southern Germany climbed to well over 30C. The warmest area was Bad Mergentheim-Neunkirchen in the northeast of Baden-Wuerttemberg with 37.1C, according to DWD meteorologist Tobias Reinartz.

In general, temperatures in the south and in the middle of Germany were above 30C.

The temperatures brought the Baltic beaches in Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania a record-breaking number of visitors on Saturday. Even off the coast at some of the state's lakes, the amount of visitors was so large that access had to be limited.

Last year Germany saw its hottest ever temperature since records began – 42.6C – was recorded in Lingen, Lower Saxony, on July 25th during a European-wide heatwave.


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What temperatures can we expect in Germany this week?

Parts of Germany will see another heatwave this week as temperatures soar.

What temperatures can we expect in Germany this week?

The German Weather Service (DWD) has predicted that the mercury will climb in some regions of to around 34C this week. 

“After low pressure ‘Karin’ gave parts of Germany rain, sometimes in large quantities, high pressure ‘Piet’ is now back in pole position,” said meteorologist Lars Kirchhübel of the DWD.

This high pressure zone will dominate the weather in large parts of western and central Europe over the coming days, the weather expert said, adding that it will reach Germany too. 

On Monday temperatures remained fairly cool across the country after a weekend of showers, but they are set to climb over the course of the week, particularly on Wednesday and Thursday. Forecasters predict it could reach 32C in Stuttgart and 33C in Cologne on Thursday. Locally, temperatures could reach 34C. 

However, from the Oder and Neisse rivers to the Erzgebirge mountains and southeast Bavaria, denser clouds and some showers are to be expected. This is due to a high-level low pressure system over the Balkan region, according to forecasters. Short showers are also possible in the Black Forest.

“In most of the rest of the country, high ‘Piet’ will be able to hold its ground,” said Kirchhübel.

READ ALSO: Heavy rain in Bavaria swells rivers, but flooding avoided

At the end of the week, thunderstorms are forecast but temperatures are expected to remain high. 

August in Germany ‘too dry’

According to the European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts, August as a whole – apart from a few areas in eastern Germany – will be too dry compared to the multi-year average.

The Black Forest, the High Rhine and the Allgäu to the Bavarian Forest, however, are not expected to have any major problems due to the high rainfall of the past few days.

“Looking at Rhineland-Palatinate, the southern half of Hesse, the western half of North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Franconia shows a different picture,” said Kirchhübel. In the last 30 days, only about 10 percent of the usual level of precipitation fell in some places.

“At some stations, no precipitation at all has been measured in August,” added Kirchhübel, referencing Würzburg as an example.

Rainfall at the weekend caused the water in the Rhine river to rise slightly. In Emmerich, the water level reached a positive value again after the historic low of the past few days: in the morning, it showed three centimetres – an increase of six centimetres compared to the previous day.

The water level also rose by several centimetres at the other measuring points in North Rhine-Westphalia: in Cologne, the level rose to 80cm and in Düsseldorf to 38cm.

READ ALSO: Damaged freighter blocks traffic at drought-hit Rhine

Despite this encouraging trend, the Waterways and Shipping Authority said it did not expect a huge improvement in water levels in the foreseeable future due to more hot weather coming.