Abnormally high temperatures for the season have affected both the Iberian Peninsula and France in recent days. Temperatures were about 10-15°C above average thanks to a very hot and dry airflow from northern Africa.
On May 17, temperatures in much of Spain, as well as southern and central France, rose well above 30°C. A maximum temperature of 35.5°C was recorded in the province of Huelva in southern Spain, with a provisional maximum of 32.9°C recorded in the French commune of Montélimar. La Hague near the English Channel reached 26.6C, breaking the May record for this place set 100 years ago.
On the second day of the heat wave (May 18), temperatures in France peaked at 35.8°C in Soorts-Hossegor, with many monthly temperature records falling. In Spain, a maximum of 37.2°C was recorded in the city of Cordoba. On Thursday, temperatures tentatively peaked at nearly 40C in Spain with highs well above 30C in southern France.
Temperatures were expected to intensify on Friday and Saturday across Spain and southern France, with the event expected to be one of the strongest on record, both in duration and intensity. Across the Spanish interior, temperatures are expected to reach 35-38C, with records near 40-42C expected in the Guadalquivir Valley.
Meanwhile, a rare subtropical cyclone brought strong winds to Uruguay and southern Brazil. Earlier this week, Cyclone Yakecan hit Uruguay before moving north into Brazil. The storm claimed at least two lives, including a man killed when a tree collapsed on his house.
In the Uruguayan capital of Montevideo, a maximum wind gust of 61 mph was recorded. In southern Brazil, at least 200,000 homes and businesses were left without power. The cyclone also allowed cold air to push unusually far north, with temperatures near zero in northern Argentina, as well as in the southeastern highlands of Brazil on Tuesday.
Extremely high temperatures also continued to affect Pakistan and northern India. On May 14, 51C was reported in the Pakistani city of Jacobabad, the highest temperature of 2022 so far in the world. High temperatures are expected to return next week, with highs expected to approach 50C again.