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Europe suffers in sweltering heat

Europe suffers in sweltering heat
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It is feared the heatwave currently sweeping large parts of Europe may have claimed hundreds of lives and caused extensive destruction.

Temperatures have been hovering near the 40 degrees celcius mark in many capital cities.

UK health authorities say an abnormal number of deaths over the last fortnight – several hundred higher than usual – may have been caused by the heat.

In Germany passengers were evacuated from three trains during the weekend when temperatures inside them reached 50 degrees celcius after air-conditioning broke down. Several people required treatment and a number were hospitalised.

In neighbouring Switzerland they have been coping with violent thunderstorms created by the sweltering heat. Lightening strikes and torrential rain have caused mudlsides, flash floods and capsized boats on Lake Zurich.

In Poland the soaring temperatures are believed to be behind a spate of snake bites that have hospitalised several children. It is thought the hot conditions have boosted the adder population.

As usual, the public is being advised to drink as much water as possible and stay out of the sun.