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Italy issues Red Alert for 16 cities as temperatures reach record highs

Tourists cool off in a public fountain in Milan, Italy.

As temperatures soar to record levels, the Italian government has issued a Red Alert for 16 cities across the country, including Rome.

It has warned people to avoid direct sunlight between 11h00 and 18h00 and to take particular care of the elderly and the vulnerable.

Forecasters have told Italians to prepare for “the most intense heatwave of the summer and also one of the most intense of all time”.

“You physically suffer from this heat, which is lasting for a long time. It doesn't stop after a few days, like it did a few years ago. Now this heat lasts for more than a month,” said one Italian woman.

And it is not only humans that require particular care. Animals in Rome’s Zoo are being fed frozen food to help keep them cool.

As countries across Europe continue to experience record temperatures, Swedish environmental activist Greta Thunberg posted a picture on Twitter saying "Is this the sign you are looking for?”.

Meanwhile, on Spanish island of La Palma, the heatwave is being blamed for a massive forest fire. Around 4,000 people have been forced to move already with the authorities saying more evacuations may become necessary.

High temperatures are expected to continue into next week with Italy, Spain, France, Germany, and Poland likely experiencing extreme conditions.

Posted on 16 Jul 2023 09:12 link