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Islands bask in summer heatwave

Greek Islands bask in summer heatwave.

While we dodge rain showers and leaden skies in the UK, holidaymakers on the Greek Islands are basking in the sunshine, with a hot weather warning this week. Temperatures have soared this month and vulnerable groups across Greece have been warned to take extra care in the hot sunshine.

It is not only those on Greek Island beach holidays who should take care, the Greeks themselves have been cautioned to take extra precautions to avoid health problems, such as heat exhaustion and fainting.

The General Secretariat of Civil Protection has advised young children, the elderly, and those with serious health problems to remain in cool and shadowy places, drink lots of water, wear bright and light clothing and never leave home without sun glasses and hat.

Western Greece is expected to be hit hardest by the late July heatwave, especially the Western Peloponnese, the west coast mainland and the offshore Ionian islands of Corfu, Kefalonia, Paxos, Lefkas and Zante.

According to the Hellenic National Meteorological Service, mainland temperatures are expected to range from 38 to 40°C degrees, while the Ionian islands will have an average temperature of 36 to 37°C.

The Greek Islands average of 32°C this time of year, with highs of 39°C, but the forecast average temperatures of 38 to 40°C come with predictions of light winds that will fail to have any significant impact on humidity levels of over 60%.

The islands of the Aegean and the Ionian will see the hot weather tempered by northwesterly winds coming in off a wet front in northern Greece later.

Holidaymakers are used to hot sunshine and clear blue skies on the Greek Islands at this time of year. Many will recall 2007 when Greece and the Greek Islands suffered a summer long heatwave.

The heatwave, one of the worst in Greek history, was blamed for the deaths of at least nine people as well as two firefighters killed in one of dozens of forest fires that broke out all over the country.

It was September before temperatures dropped to below 40°C after a nine-day period in which thermometers hit 46°C in some areas.

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