Temperatures soar as possible heatwave hits the Netherlands

Temperatures soar as possible heatwave hits the Netherlands

Tuesday, July 24, was the start of a few extremely hot days in the Netherlands. If the temperatures continue to rise as forecast, by Thursday there could be talk of an official national heatwave.

National heatwave in the Netherlands

In order to be classified as a national heatwave, temperatures at the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute (KNMI) measuring point De Bilt need to be above 25C or higher for five consecutive days, with temperatures reaching 30C or above for three of the five days. Maximum temperatures at De Bilt have been above 25C since July 15, but not above 30C.

Should the weather continue as forecast – dry and sunny with temperatures of above 30C from Tuesday, July 24 to Thursday, July 26, then there is officially a heatwave in the Netherlands. Certain regions in the country are already experiencing a heatwave.

Areas such as Twente, Arcen, Gilze-Rijen and Westdorpe are already enduring a heatwave. Other areas in the Netherlands, especially in the south and east are expected to join this group of areas soon enough.

Extreme heat expected

According to Weeronline, on Wednesday we can expect pretty much the same weather as Tuesday, July 24, namely 30C to 33C in the centre of the country and 33C to 35C in the southeast. Even higher temperatures are forecast on Thursday, July 26, and Friday, July 27. During those days, temperatures of 29C to 30C on Texel are anticipated, as well as 33C in Amsterdam and 36C to 37C in North-Limburg.

It is predicted that the conditions for a national heatwave will be met by Thursday. On Friday evening, there is a possibility of a thunderstorm in the south and west of the Netherlands. The possibility of thunderstorms over the country will increase during the weekend. Temperatures in the weekend are expected to drop slightly, and on Sunday 23C to 27C is forecast in the west and 28C to 30C in the east. 

Amsterdam bridges closed

Due to the hot weather in the Netherlands, 12 bridges in Amsterdam can no longer be opened for sailing boats or ships, as the metal, which the bridges are made from, has expanded.

According to the municipality, the problem with the bridges is due to the constant high temperatures the country is currently experiencing. The bridges were being cooled using water from the canal; however, that is no longer working. In order to preserve road transport, the bridges will stay closed. Ships will be temporarily re-routed.

Dutch Heat Plan activated

The increasing temperatures have resulted in the activation of the National Heat Plan by the Netherlands National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM). RIVM asks that people take extra care of those who are extra vulnerable to the heat, such as the elderly, those who are chronically ill, overweight or in a care home.

RIVM suggests the following measures for combatting the heat:

  • Drink enough water
  • Wear thin but protective clothing
  • Use sun screen
  • If you are outside, look for a place in the shade
  • Limit physical activity in the afternoon
  • Keep your house cool
  • Pay extra attention to dependants, such as children or vulnerable people

During the next few days, there will be a high amount of UV radiation. Protect yourself from the scorching sun, as your skin could burn within 15 minutes of exposure. If you are looking to cool off from the sun, make sure you check whether the water is clean via, as there have been increasing reports of unsafe swimming water.

Mina Solanki


Mina Solanki

Completed her Master's degree at the University of Groningen and worked as a translator before joining IamExpat. She loves to read and has a particular interest in Greek mythology. In...

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