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France closes schools and limits road usage as heatwave hits

France is set to close dozens of schools and restrict road usage due to a heatwave which is expected to see temperatures climb above 40C in some areas later this week.

Exceptionally hot air has blown in from the Sahara, closing around 50 schools in the Essonne region as they lack sufficient air conditioning. Schools will also be shut in the Val-de-Marne and Seine-et-Marne regions near Paris on Thursday according to the French channel BFMTV.

Officials have decided that only the least polluting vehicles would be allowed on the roads from Wednesday in Paris and Lyon, with Paris especially prone to smog in hot temperatures. Smog is a type of severe air pollution and exhaust emissions can contribute to it significantly.

Some experts have linked the heatwave to climate change. Local authorities in France have been issuing advice on how to stay cool during the period of exceptionally high temperatures.

Other parts of Europe are also experiencing especially high temperatures, with some areas of Spain expecting 45C on Friday. Germany and Italy are also experiencing high temperatures but currently, remain below 40C. Parts of the UK are forecast temperatures of around 32C this weekend. 

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