A strong early summer blast of heat will set up an outbreak of potentially severe thunderstorms across a part of central and western Europe.
High winds and hail could become damaging beginning Wednesday in the eastern half of France. Strong thunderstorms will shift north and east to Germany and even Denmark on Thursday. Other countries at risk of damaging storms will be Netherlands, Belgium and Switzerland together with nearby Austria and northern Italy.
Ahead of the thunderstorms, temperatures will soar to between 85 and 95 degrees, mostly 15 to 20 degrees above normal, on the hottest one to three days between north-central France and Poland.
First, the strong thunderstorms on Wednesday could erupt as far south and west as Paris, Lyon and Geneva. By Thursday, the focus for strongest thunderstorms will shift to northern and western Germany, potentially striking Hamburg, Frankfurt, Zurich and even Milano, Italy. By Thursday night, the leading edge of potentially severe storms could stretch from Copenhagen to Berlin and Munich.
Low pressure tracking from northern Spain to western Norway between Wednesday and Friday will trigger the thunderstorm outbreak. The abnormal heat the will spread ahead of the storm and its trailing cold front, which will swing eastward as the low advance.