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Heatwave forecast for Belgium next week - with possibly 40°C
Belgium is facing a heatwave early next week - with one forecaster predicting that temperatures could reach 40°C for the first time.
A mass of hot air from north Africa will cross the Mediterranean and reach Belgium, bringing five days of exceptionally warm weather, according to the latest forecasts.
Tuesday and Wednesday will be the hottest, with potentially 40°C in Brussels in the middle of the day, a daytime average of 30°C and temperatures not going below 25°C at night.
"The forecast could change completely in the coming days, but all the models suggest that next week will be very hot," said Xavier Fettweiss, a climatologist at Liège University.
He said a more accurate picture would be possible two to three days beforehand. "But above 30°C is a pretty safe assumption," he added.
The hottest temperature ever recorded in Belgium by the Royal Meteorological Institute was 38.8°C on 27 July last year, in Hechtel-Eksel, Limburg province.
Fetteweiss said: "We recorded 50°C in India and 40-50°C In Iran and Iraq last week. In Greenland there is a record level of melting ice. Clearly we see the signs of global warming."
Photo: Eric Lalmand/Belga