Spain holidaymakers given extreme weather warning for this weekend

Official forecaster predicts Spain’s hottest May temperatures on record

<p>The city of Seville is set to be affected by the heatwave</p>

The city of Seville is set to be affected by the heatwave

Holidaymakers heading for southern Spain have been warned of extreme weather as the weekend approaches, with some areas forecast to hit 40 degrees Celsius

AEMET, Spain’s official national forecaster, has issued several yellow weather alerts for Thursday to Saturday, with the coming days to potentially hit the hottest May temperatures on record.

Areas affected include Seville and Granada, both popular cities for tourists in the southern region of Andalusia, as well as Zaragoza in the northeast of the country, and the capital of Madrid.

AEMET said that temperatures in the Guadalquivir Valley, near Cordoba in Andalusia, could pass 40 C on Friday and hit 42 C on Saturday.

Last summer, Spain hit its highest ever temperature: 47.4 C, recorded on 14 August in the town of Montoro near Cordoba.

These temperature raise the spectre of wildfires in Spain’s driest regions, with AEMET calling for caution from locals and issuing emergency numbers for anyone who spots smoke.

The Spanish government has warned locals to wear light clothing, stay hydrated and keep an eye on young children, elderly people and those with medical conditions.

“The last updates to the meteorological models confirm the extraordinary intensity of this heatwave,” Rubén del Campo, a spokesperson for AEMET, told The Guardian.

“For Spain as a whole, it could be the most intense May heatwave of the past 20 years in terms of both the maximum and minimum temperatures.

“Friday and Saturday will be the hottest days in general terms and, although there will be an important drop in temperatures on Sunday across the western third of the peninsula, that could be the hottest day in parts of the eastern side of Spain and in the Balearic islands.”

The Independent’s travel contributor Fiona Flores Watson is currently in Seville. She says: “The extreme heat here in Seville is unpleasant and suffocating.

“The high temperatures make you feel exhausted and allergies are worse too. Lots of the football fans who were here for the Europa League final this week got sunburned and dehydrated from sitting out in the sun all day.”

Temperatures have also soared in southern France, with the towns of Albi, Toulouse and Montelimar seeing nearly 34 degrees C on Wednesday.

“This will be an extreme episode and the risk that comes with the high temperatures will be important in many areas,” added Del Campo.

“Another thing to be aware of is dust in the air, which could lead to calimas in the south and east of the peninsula, with murky skies and reduced visibility. That concentration of dust in the air could increase on Friday and Saturday across the peninsula and the Balearic islands as air comes in from north Africa carrying the dust from the Sahara. That will again cause a decline in air quality.”

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