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The heat has been the main protagonist of this weekend in mid-August. The now famous African air mass has colored a deep red the temperature map of the State Meteorological Agency (Aemet).

The center and south of the peninsula, as well as the islands, are the areas that have suffered the most from the arrival of this heat wave, which, according to Rubén del Campo, spokesperson for the Aemet, is possibly “one of the most intense lived in terms of maxims”. In addition, “it has also been significant in terms of extent affected by high temperatures”, taking into account that this weekend up to 15 communities have remained on alert for heat, four of them at extreme risk: Andalusia, Aragon, Catalonia and Comunidad Valencian.

In many municipalities and localities, even historic temperatures have been reached. As the Aemet reports, they have been matched or beaten records of absolute maximum temperatures in a score of meteorological stations and, in some cases, records have been broken in two or even three days.

The list is extensive, but the 46.9 degrees measured in Córdoba on the 14th stand out, equaling its record on July 13, 2017. It is the highest value measured at the moment in the main Aemet network. The same day, the Montoro automatic station, also in the province of Córdoba, measured 47.4 degrees, surpassing by one tenth its previous record, of July 13, 2017, and that it is the highest temperature reliably measured in Spain in the main network of the Aemet and its modern network of automatic stations.

What’s more, maximum temperature records have been broken in Albacete Air Base, with record temperatures throughout the weekend. The highest, recorded during the day on Saturday, when it reached 43.3 degrees and exceeding 42 degrees in the month of August 2012. Albacete capital also set a record during Friday and Saturday, although it was in this second day of the heat wave when it reached its highest temperature since August 2012, at 42.7 degrees.

Ávila did not register temperatures above 40 degrees, but almost. Both Friday and Saturday, it broke records, but it was on this second day when it reached its zenith, standing at 38.8 degrees, something historic for the area, since the maximum that had been registered until then was 37.4 degrees in 2005.

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Castilla y León continued to accumulate temperature records during the weekend. Thus, the thermometers of other provinces such as Segovia, with 38.7 degrees on Friday, and Soria, also on this day with 38.5 degrees, made history since August 2003 and 1957, respectively.

In Castilla-La Mancha, Cuenca had the highest maximum temperature record, where the three days (Friday, Saturday and Sunday) the maximums reached historical levels and, at all times, above 40 degrees. Specifically, Friday’s day was the hottest with 41.5 degrees, which far exceeds its August 2012 record of 39.7 degrees.

In addition, in the province of Teruel, both the town of Calamocha and the capital itself exceeded the maximum temperatures recorded so far. In Calamocha 39.9 degrees were reached both on Friday and Saturday, and in Teruel capital, the temperatures at all times exceeded 40 degrees, reaching their maximum Saturday with 41.3 degrees and surpassing the record of 40.2 in August 2012.

In the Madrid community, thermometers have also surpassed the maximum known so far. Above all, in areas such as El Retiro park, above 40 degrees both on Friday and Saturday; Madrid Barajas Airport, with almost 43 degrees on Saturday; Madrid Cuatro Vientos, with its maximum on Saturday with 42.2 degrees; Getafe, with 42.6 degrees on Saturday, or Torrejón de Ardoz, with 42 degrees on Friday.

However, in the south of the peninsula is where the highest temperatures have been this weekend. Thus, in addition, Cordoba, areas such as Granada, or the Alcantarilla air base, in Murcia, have also given something to talk about: records have been broken with 46 degrees on Saturday, and 46.8 degrees on Sunday, respectively. Also in Murcia, with 46.2 degrees on Sunday, far exceeding the 43.2 degrees recorded in August 2012.

Of all of them, only the meteorological stations of Cuenca and Teruel registered historical highs during the days of Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Temperatures above 40 degrees, in any case, surpass the records registered in these locations in August 2012.

As to minimum temperaturesRecords have been equaled or broken in Jaén, where on Friday it did not drop below 30.2 degrees; in areas of the Community of Madrid such as Getafe or Madrid Retiro, around 26 degrees, or in Albacete Air Base and Albacete capital, where it did not drop below 25 degrees.

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Minimum temperatures have also been very high with temperatures above 25 degrees in large areas of the Mediterranean: the central and southern half of the Peninsula. The torrid nights, those whose minimum temperature does not drop below 25 degrees have reached a great extension in this heat wave: some 85 stations of the Aemet network did not fall below that figure in the early hours of Friday the 13th to Saturday, and in the early hours of Saturday to Saturday. Sunday, about a hundred. Even some stations did not drop below 30 degrees.

At the same time, in some areas of the Mediterranean, local phenomena occurred, such as the calls warm blowouts, associated with dry storms that raised early morning temperatures above 38 and even 40 degrees. This occurred at dawn from Saturday to Sunday in areas close to the coast of the province of Castellón, as very warm air descended from the middle layers of the troposphere to sea level and warmed up during this descent.

In any case, as of Tuesday this heat wave will begin to leave the peninsula and, with its departure, will leave a drop in thermometers of at least 10 degrees in large areas of the Peninsula. It has been, therefore, an intense phenomenon, but not historical in terms of extension. As Del Campo points out, “there have been more extensive heat waves in terms of days’ duration.”

Now, if César Rodríguez Ballesteros, climatologist of the Aemet, could certify something, it is that on August 13 and 14, 2021, within this heat wave they were the second and third warmest recorded in the whole of Spain since 1941. Hot days that, as meteorological experts have already warned, will become more frequent and more intense.

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