Half the country is facing a long holiday weekend. And the summer shows for the first time what it can do. The temperatures climb up to the 40 degree mark. It is still unclear whether there will even be a heat wave, as ntv meteorologist Björn Alexander says. In any case, the heat is followed by lightning.
ntv: Germany is facing the first heat wave of summer 2022 – how bad will it be?
Björn Alexander: It's hitting the southwest of our country in particular pretty hard. Temperatures here will reach 30 degrees and more by the weekend. The nights are also becoming increasingly sweaty and by Sunday night at the latest, people are experiencing the first tropical night of the year - i.e. with lows of no less than 20 degrees.
In the rest of the country, the first attempts at walking in midsummer are becoming less sweaty?
Definitely at the beginning. Because we will not experience the general peak of temperatures - according to the current status - until Saturday. Then we can expect widespread highs of 30 degrees and more. The hotspot is expected to be again in the river lowlands in the southwest, where peaks of up to 37, maybe 38 degrees are conceivable. This puts us in the area of record temperatures for the second third of June. So not much more is possible. But to come back to the heat wave in general: It only occurs when the temperature reaches 30 degrees or more for three - or five, depending on the definition - days in a row.
What happens after Saturday in terms of heat?
This is currently being evaluated differently by the weather computers. The trends in the European weather model are currently extending midsummer up to and including Monday - especially in the south and east with brutal heat of over 35, maybe even up to 40 degrees. So the peak might not even be possible until Sunday. Other forecasts are meanwhile letting the heat subside slowly from the north-west on Sunday.
First heat, then lightning - will that be the motto again?
Unfortunately, hot temperatures and rising humidity together always have a high potential for severe thunderstorms with associated side effects. These are in particular heavy rain, hail and squalls. A triad that will most likely threaten us the next time the weather changes. But localized heat thunderstorms are also to be expected before a sustained cooling.
When do the thunderstorms start and what are the details for the possible long weekend?
On Thursday (Corpus Christi) strong and lightning-intensive thunderstorms are possible in the south. Partly with the risk of heavy rain, hail and squalls. Lightning and thunder cannot be ruled out in the east either. Otherwise it will remain sunny, dry and often summery warm to hot. Apart from the fresher north, 24 to 32 degrees are usually possible; it is hottest on the Upper Rhine.
And on Friday?
A few cloud patches are moving through again in the east, while the rest gets a lot of sun. The summer air sloshes further and further north and penetrates up into the Emsland, into the Hamburg area and into southern Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania with 25 degrees and more. The hottest is on the Rhine and its tributaries with 29 to 32 degrees to the point. Meanwhile, the real heat is spreading in our direction from the depths of the Sahara, via Spain with temperatures up to 45 degrees via France with around 40 degrees and new record values.
When will she reach us?
On Saturday - and it will be comparable to a real summer hammer. Because compared to Friday, the temperatures jump up by four to eight degrees on average. That means Germany is becoming the Ü-30 zone. Apart from the coastal regions in the sea wind with values around 22 degrees, we often expect between 28 and 37 degrees - even up to 38 degrees are conceivable and thus the German record of 38.3 degrees in the second third of June wobbles. Occasional thunderstorms cannot be ruled out in the north, but mostly the sun dominates.
How's it going on Sunday?
In the south and east, the weather computers are still on the sunny and hot side. To the north and west, the air gradually becomes muggy, increasing the likelihood of isolated heat thunderstorms. Small, but quite intensive cooling off in an otherwise boiling weather kitchen.
What temperatures can we expect?
In the south and east, the values climb again to well over 30 degrees. The north and west, on the other hand, could cool down a bit - but this is far from certain due to the uncertainties in the forecasts. A continuation of the heat is also conceivable.
When is an end in sight?
Depending on the weather model, the air mass change happens between Sunday and Wednesday with a sometimes considerable risk of severe weather. Definitely an explosive development, before things are likely to continue in a more changeable and much cooler way afterwards.