Swiss heatwave melts roads as forecasters predict rain is coming

Swiss heatwave melts roads as forecasters predict rain is coming

The ongoing heatwave in Switzerland has seen temperatures hit 36 degrees celsius in the past few days. While the authorities have advised people to take care in the heat, the weather is also causing logistical problems - namely, a melted road that fell victim to the heat in Canton Aargau. 

Road melts in Aargau under extreme heat

Since Sunday evening, a road between Villigen and Mandach has been closed due to melting, according to information posted by the Swiss police on Instagram. Swiss broadcaster SRF quizzed the cantonal authorities on the closure of the road: since the road is an older construction, the surface has become soft and slippery due to the extended heat, the department confirmed. 

As temperatures rise, road surfaces can become too difficult and dangerous to drive on, and can even sink under the weight of vehicles. In recent years, the problem has become a greater issue for European countries, as many nations do not use special heat-resistant road coverings since the European climate is milder than elsewhere in the world - though there are growing calls for heat-resistant asphalt to be used in the region.

Heatwave set to come to an end in Switzerland

Thankfully, the heatwave is predicted to be over fairly soon. The peak of the heatwave is expected on August 24, when temperatures may get up to 38 degrees in Geneva. It is then expected to remain hot until the weekend, when rain is expected to cover much of the country and temperatures will begin to cool. Things will then remain relatively mild and wet for the foreseeable future.

As the temperatures drop, the base of the affected road should harden again, but the cantonal authorities told SRF that it is also scheduled to be renovated in the near future. 

Emily Proctor


Emily Proctor

Emily grew up in the UK before moving abroad to study International Relations and Chinese. She then obtained a Master's degree in International Security and gained an interest in journalism....

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