Charon heatwave sparks 20 red weather alerts as heat storm set to break record

Records are expected to be smashed over the next few hours in Italy as the Mediterranean country is suffering yet another day of extreme heat brought by the infernal Charon heatwave.

Weather forecaster Antonio Sanò warned Rome is very likely to see the mercury hit 42C on Tuesday afternoon.

The previous record temperature seen in the Italian capital was 40.7C, experienced in June last year.

Tourists have been urged to be mindful of the extreme temperatures when visiting the Eternal City and avoid being in the sun during the central hours of the day.

To prevent heatstrokes and health issues as much as possible, local emergency services have created a task force including 80 people to support whoever is in need and hand bottles of water to those who look at the risk of dehydration.

READ MORE: Brits ‘cancelling holidays due to heat’ as wild fires force resort evacuations

Rome is just one of the 20 cities where the Italian Health Ministry has enforced a red alert.

Naples, Palermo, Venice and Verona are also among the cities where officials believe the high temperatures can be a health hazard to all people, no matter their age or health conditions.

Between Tuesday and Wednesday, many cities in northern Italy such as Padova and Mantova will see temperatures ranging between 38C-40C, while southern regions including Sardinia and Sicily will see peaks of 45C-47C.  

The European record of 48.8C recorded in Syracuse in August last year has been tipped to be smashed during this heatwave by weather forecasters. 

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Millions of Italians will experience temperatures above 30C even after the sun goes down at night.

Sultriness created by high levels of humidity, Mr Sanò warned, is making weather conditions even more unbearable and dangerous to those who suffer from respiratory or heart issues.

He told Italian forecasting website “It’s not just the hot temperature to make this heat storm ‘savage’, but also the sultry weather created by humidity, set to worsen the physical discomfort.”

Some relief will come on Thursday and Friday in the northern regions, where the heat will be less intense – but in the south Italy will continue to be blistering hot.

Charon is targeting several European cities, including Spain, France and Greece.

Last Friday, officials in Athens decided to close down the Parthenon to tourists between 12pm and 5pm as temperatures hit 40C.

The country also faced wildfires in two areas around the capital city, which triggered evacuation orders for at least six seaside communities.

Wildfires continue to burn also La Palma, a holiday hotspot in Spain’s Canary Islands which over the past few days has affected more than 4,600 hectares of forest in the northern part of the island.

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