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Israel roasts in extreme heat wave, day after Jerusalem broke all records

After it reached a scorching 42ºC in Jerusalem on Thursday, temperatures in the capital and other areas of the country remain sky high; overnight heat record also broken

  • People enjoy a hot summer day at the Ein Lavan Spring in the Jerusalem Mountains, August 30, 2020. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
    People enjoy a hot summer day at the Ein Lavan Spring in the Jerusalem Mountains, August 30, 2020. (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
  • A woman uses an umbrella to shelter from the heat, on Jaffa Street in Jerusalem on September 4, 2020 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
    A woman uses an umbrella to shelter from the heat, on Jaffa Street in Jerusalem on September 4, 2020 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)
  • A man wearing a mask to curb the spread of the coronavirus holds a child on an overlook at the Mount of Olives as they watch the sun set behind the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, September 2, 2020. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo)
    A man wearing a mask to curb the spread of the coronavirus holds a child on an overlook at the Mount of Olives as they watch the sun set behind the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, September 2, 2020. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo)

Israel continued to swelter Friday under an extreme heat wave forecast to extend well into next week.

The temperature in Jerusalem had passed 39ºC (102ºF) as of 11:30 a.m., according to Israel Meteorological Service data, a day after the capital recorded an all-time high of 42ºC (107ºF) since record-keeping began in 1942.

The overnight temperature record was also broken in the capital, with the mercury rising to 31.5ºC (88.7ºF) — an increase of one degree on the previous high.

In the Red Sea resort town of Eilat, the mercury climbed to 43.7ºC (110.6ºF), while temperatures of 39.ºC were also recorded in the northern cities of Beit Shean and Tiberias.

People walk with face masks on Jaffa Street in Jerusalem on September 4, 2020 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

The weather was cooler along the Mediterranean coast, with a temperature of 32ºC (89ºF) in Tel Aviv and 33ºC (91ºF) in Haifa.

The current heat wave has been unprecedented for Jerusalem, which usually enjoys slightly cooler weather than the rest of the country thanks to its location and relatively high altitude at some 800 meters (2,600 feet) above sea level.

Aside from 2010, the only other time since record-keeping began in 1942 that temperatures in Jerusalem reached above 39º C (102.2º F) was on Sunday, when a temperature of 39.6º C (103.3 F) was notched.

The Israel Meteorological Service said temperatures throughout the country were expected to drop slightly on Saturday before tapering off further in the coming days, but would remain above the seasonal average. However, temperatures were forecast to again spike on Thursday, when they will reach the upper 30s Celsius in Jerusalem, and higher elsewhere.

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