Is summer coming? Temperatures may hit 27 degrees next week
Saharan Outbreak is set to drive temperatures over 40 degrees in parts of Europe
Swimmers dive off rocks at the Forty-Foot in Dublin. Photograph: Dave Meehan for the Irish Times
Temperatures could reach as high as 27 degrees in Ireland on Thursday next week making it the hottest day of the year so far.
The expected heatwave, which has been nicknamed the Saharan Outbreak, is expected to bring temperatures of up to 44 degrees in Italy and Spain, 40 degrees in Germany and 35 degrees in the Netherlands.
London, which has also had an indifferent summer so far temperature-wise, is likely to see a number of days next week when temperatures reach 30 degrees.
The high temperatures are being caused by air coming from the Sahara desert in Algeria.
An Atlantic cold front and high pressure over Europe is driving this hot air northwards.
Forecasters have warned this warm air is likely to touch off ferocious thunderstorms across Europe, bringing torrential rain.
It will also be extremely muggy at night with temperatures of 25 degrees across continental Europe.
The fierce heat will extend eastwards on Thursday and Friday into eastern Europe and the Balkans.
The plume of hot air will reach Ireland on Monday. Temperatures will rise well above average with the possibility of 24 or 25 degrees on Wednesday and then 27 degrees on Thursday.
Met Éireann forecaster Liz Walsh cautioned there is still “a lot to play for” in terms of the forecast for next week as Ireland’s proximity to the low pressure system could potentially see heavy showers break out anywhere.
However, she said high temperatures across the country are certain.
In the meantime more changeable conditions will apply across Ireland for the weekend.
Saturday will be dry with highs of 20 degrees, but Sunday is likely to be a wet day in most places with thundery rain giving rise to the possibility of flash flooding places.
There will be thunderstorms in places on Sunday at the start of what will be a very humid week.