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WEATHER

Three dead as Italy bakes under heatwave

Three people have died in Italy's central Abruzzo region due to the ongoing heatwave.

Three dead as Italy bakes under heatwave
One of the heatwave victims died while swimming at Francavilla a Mare, Abruzzo. Photo: Giulio Gigante/Flickr

An 86-year-old died as she went into the sea for a swim in Giulianova, while a 74-year-old man died in the sea at Francavilla a Mare, officials told Ansa.

Another man, aged 64, also died while cycling with a friend in Elice, a town in the province of Pescara.

A heatwave advisory has been issued by Italy’s civil protection authority as temperatures are expected to hover around 36 degrees Celsius for the next couple of days. Children, the elderly and the chronically ill are most at risk, officials said.

Over 100 people, mostly elderly, died of heat-related illnesses during the summer of 2015 – Italy’s warmest for more than a decade.
 

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WEATHER

Italy braces for first heatwave of the year with highs of over 30C

Temperatures are set to rise dramatically across Italy this weekend as the country prepares for its first real heatwave of the year, meteorologists said on Friday.

Italy braces for first heatwave of the year with highs of over 30C

People across Italy are preparing to head to the beach this weekend with unseasonably hot weather predicted to last for several days.

The heatwave is caused by an anticyclone named  ‘Hannibal’ sweeping in from Tunisia and Algeria, bringing hot air currents across the Mediterranean and as far north as Denmark and Poland, reports news agency Ansa.

Temperatures are forecast to rise above 32-33°C in parts of the Italian north including Veneto, Trentino Alto Adige, and Emilia Romagna, before the heatwave expands towards the centre and south of the country over the course of the weekend.

The weather is already 8°C above the seasonal average for this time of year, according to Antonio Sanò, founder of the Italian weather site IlMeteo.it, and temperatures could rise by as much as 10°C.

READ ALSO: From Venice to Mont Blanc, how is the climate crisis affecting Italy?

In a typical year these kinds of highs wouldn’t be seen until July, Sanò said.

The incoming heatwave will be particularly humid as the anticyclone is carrying moisture from the Mediterranean sea, according to IlMeteo.

However, the relative cool of the Mediterranean basin at this time of year will contain the heat and keep the temperatures from rising into the high 30s, as would happen if the same type of weather event occurred in August.

READ ALSO: Nine in 10 Italians ‘want more action on climate crisis’, new study finds

The heatwave will stretch over the weekend and continue into next week, peaking on Tuesday, according to weather reports.

Patchy thunderstorms typical of midsummer weather are anticipated in the Alps and the Po Valley, while the centre-south is set to experience hot and sunny conditions bar some isolated storms in the mountains of Abruzzo on Sunday.

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