Europe sizzled under a continent-wide heatwave on Wednesday, with London bracing for Britain's hottest June day since 1976 as Portugal struggled to stamp out deadly forest fires.
More than 1,000 firefighters were still battling to control the flames that broke out in central Portugal at the weekend, killing at least 64 people.
Two forest fires have also broken out since Sunday on Croatia's southern Adriatic coast, prompting the authorities to evacuate 800 tourists, although the blazes have now been brought under control.
As the northern hemisphere marked the summer solstice – the longest day of the year – the mercury hovered around 35°C across oven-like swathes of Europe, including Italy, Austria, the Netherlands and even alpine Switzerland.
B1093 Mill Hill to Doddington Please be aware the road is melting, highways have been called, approach with care @CambsCC @HeartCambs #2445 pic.twitter.com/FY5TMU7CUE — Fenland police (@FenCops) June 19, 2017
And a thunderstorm was looming over the Glastonbury Music Festival, threatening mud just as an expected 200,000 revellers begin pitching their tents.
Temperatures were due to peak Wednesday at 37°C in the Centre-Val de Loire area south of Paris, while a peak in pollution in the capital linked to the heat prompted police to reduce speed limits in some areas and divert heavy goods vehicles.
In Russia, Siberia was also suffering a heatwave, with temperatures of up to 37 C in the city of Krasnoyarsk, Channel One television reported.
But at the other extreme, it was just one degree Celsius and snowing in Murmansk in northern Russia, the RIA Novosti news agency reported. Many residents are having to get by with no heating in their flats as centralised systems have been switched off for the summer.