The UK’s record temperature has been broken amid an exceptional heatwave that has caused chaos and wildfires around the country.
The temperature on Tuesday exceeded 40C in the UK for the first time on record, with 40.2C reported at Heathrow at 12.50pm. It was then surpassed by a record 40.3C recorded in Coningsby, Lincolnshire a few hours later – beating the previous extreme of 38.7°C in Cambridge in 2019.
It is the first time 40°C has ever been recorded in the UK with various areas recording temperatures around that high.
The Met Office said: ‘For the first time ever, 40 Celsius has provisionally been exceeded in the UK.
‘London Heathrow reported a temperature of 40.2°C at 12.50pm today.
‘Temperatures are still climbing in many places, so remember to stay #WeatherAware.’
— Met Office (@metoffice) July 19, 2022
The sweltering weather has disrupted travel, health care and schools in a country not prepared for such extremes.
Here’s everything you need to know about the scorching temperatures sweeping Europe.
What are all the temperature records that have been broken in the heatwave in Europe and the United Kingdom?
The UK has recorded a temperature of 40.3 C, provisionally shredding its previous record of 38.7 degrees Celsius. The record was set in Coningsby, Lincolnshire, according to the UK’s Met Office.
Germany is bracing for temperatures of up to 40 C in some regions on Tuesday and Wednesday, with the extreme temperatures causing drought and dryness across the country, with a high risk of wildfires.
Belgium has also extended a “code red” weather warning in a third region of the country. The head of the forecasting at a Belgian meterological institute said: “There is a sufficient chance that at least 25% of the province will reach 40 degrees.”
A French town of Cazaux recorded 42.4 degrees Celsius on Monday — the hottest it has seen since its weather station first opened more than 100 years ago in 1921 — according to French national meteorological service Météo France.
On Tuesday, Sweden also issued an orange warning for extremely high temperatures of around 35 C in the southern part of the country for Wednesday and Thursday.
Hundreds have died in Portugal, where sweltering temperatures exacerbate a severe drought with the health ministry saying at least 659 mainly elderly people had died in the previous seven days, Reuters reported.