SPANISH weather agency AEMET has predicted temperatures could hit a blistering 46ºC inland this week.

Mainland Spain is preparing for the first big heat wave of the summer. Up until now the mini heat waves have been just that ‘mini’ lasting two or three days, intermitted with days of cooler temperatures that have offered temporary respites from the oppressing heat.

On this occasion, however, weather experts have warned that this heatwave will be ‘the most intense, extensive and long-lasting’ of the summer season so far, with temperatures of up to 46ºC forecast for the region of Andalucia that will last at least until the middle of next week.

The worst hit places in Malaga will be in the regions of Antequera and Ronda, where maximum temperatures are forecast to peek at 42ºC.

The scorching heat comes as a mass of hot African air sweeps north to Europe, stabilising the atmosphere, so that the blistering sun and lack of wind will prevent the hot air from dispersing.

The torrid weather has meant that AEMET has placed most of Spain on yellow and orange alerts for scolding temperatures.

As of today, Tuesday, AEMET has already activated a dozen yellow weather warnings for extreme heat, but it will be from tomorrow, Wednesday, when temperatures will soar, with orange alerts in place across much of Andalucia for temperatures forecast to peek at 46ºC.

Specifically, maximum temperatures of 45ºC and 46ºC are forecast throughout the Guadalquivir Valley for three or four days, and 44ºC in the interior of the provinces of Huelva and Granada, especially in the Cuenca del Genil.

In the case of Malaga, no alert has been activated for the moment, but the heat will also reach the province and will last at least until the middle of next week.

Warnings have also been issued for dust from the Sahara Desert. The African dust outbreaks may exceed daily concentrations of 50 µg / m3, above the threshold considered unhealthy by the WHO.

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