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The Department of Health issued an extreme temperature warning as a heatwave intensified on Wednesday, with a peak expected on Thursday.

The ministry said in a statement on Tuesday evening that the heat is not expected to subside for several days.

The sweltering temperatures are accompanied by high humidity levels, meaning it’s much hotter, which can pose a health risk to some.

Health officials said the elderly and people with chronic illnesses should be especially careful as the mercury rises.

Additionally, the public was warned to avoid sun and heat exposure as much as possible and to avoid unnecessary physical exertion.

Additionally, people should drink water and try to stay in an air-conditioned environment as much as possible.

Hikers at a spring in the Golan Heights, July 25, 2022 (Michael Giladi/Flash90)

Temperatures on Wednesday are expected to reach 30°C (86°F) in Tel Aviv with 59% humidity, 32°C (89.6°F) in Jerusalem with 19% humidity, 28°C (82.4 °F) in Haifa and 79% 34°C (93.2°F) in Kiryat Shmona coupled with 65% humidity, 36°C (96.8°F) in Beer Sheva with 51% humidity and 40°C (104 °F) in Eilat with 25% humidity, the IMS says.

Temperatures are expected to reach 32°C (89.6°F) in Tel Aviv on Thursday with the humidity rising up to 68%, 34°C (93.2°F) in Jerusalem where the humidity will reach 27%, 29°C (84.2°F) in Haifa coupled with 67% humidity, 37°C (98.6°F) in Kiryat Shmona with 58% humidity, 38°C (100.4°F ) in the desert city of Beersheba which will see 40% according to the IMS.

Temperatures and humidity will then remain high for several days before beginning to drop in the first half of next week.

So far, Israel has experienced relatively average summer temperatures this year.

Meanwhile, Europe has weathered a heatwave that has sparked fires across the south of the continent and pushed the mercury above 40C (104F) in the UK for the first time on record .

Climatologists have warned that such extreme weather events will become more frequent due to global warming.

Visitors to Ashkelon beach, July 20, 2022. (Gershon Elinson/Flash90)

According to a recent report by the Haaretz newspaper, the IMS predicts that the country will experience 7-10 day heat waves from 2030, with temperatures reaching 50°C (122°F) in some parts of the country.

By 2060, the average number of annual heat waves will increase from the current four to six, with the average summer temperature dropping from 33.5°C (92.3°F) to 35°C (95°F), according to current estimates.

Daily highs during heat waves will reach the mid-40s and sometimes 50°C (122°F) in the Jordan Valley by 2050, while the Negev in southern Israel will also see days reaching 40 °C (104°F) to 45°C (113°F).

The IMS also warned that Israel will have 8 to 13 fewer days of rainfall in the coming years, according to a Channel 12 report.

Agencies contributed to this report.

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