UK was bracing expecting temperatures to reach 40 degrees Celsius for the first time this week, with politicians asking residents to remain at home as the heatwave forced train services to be cancelled, one London airport to restrict its runway, and several schools to postpone.

Much of Europe is experiencing a heatwave, with temperatures reaching the mid-40s Celsius (over 110 Fahrenheit) in some areas, and wildfires spreading over tinder-dry countryside in Portugal, Spain, and France. more info

The British government declared a “national emergency” when temperatures at the Cambridge University Botanic Garden were expected to break the previous record of 38.7 degrees Celsius (102 degrees Fahrenheit) in 2019.

According to Britain’s Meteorological Office, the temperature in southern England reached 38 degrees Celsius on Monday, while a new high was set in Wales. It is projected to be considerably hotter on Tuesday, with temperatures exceeding 40 degrees Celsius.

“We’ve got a difficult 48 hours coming,” Kit Malthouse, a minister in charge of government coordination, said on BBC radio.

The heat caused major travel issues.

Planes were halted at London’s Luton Airport when a surface fault on the runway was discovered, and flights were diverted from the Royal Air Force’s Brize Norton air base due to the heat. more info

The national train network advised passengers not to travel unless absolutely essential, with certain services, including a critical line between northeastern England and London, not operating on Tuesday.

The London Underground enforced temporary speed limitations, resulting in a decreased service and longer-than-usual trip times.

Network Rail’s Jake Kelly said that he anticipated regular operations would return on Wednesday, when temperatures are expected to decline, but that this would be contingent on “the damage that the weather does to the infrastructure over the next couple of days” more info

To draw attention to the problem, Network Line tweeted a photo of a kinked rail near London.

Source: Reuters

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