European heatwave led to temperatures soaring to near record highs in Spain and Portugal on Friday and governments put emergency services on alert for forest fires. Temperatures in many parts of Spain and Portugal will remain above 40 Celsius at least until Sunday, and could rise a further 2 or 3 degrees. (AP) In Portugal, local media ran stories on how temperatures could beat Death Valley in California, one of the hottest places on earth. (AP) Several places in Portugal's parched southern Alentejo region were forecast to hit 47C. (Reuters) Spanish authorities put out a heat wave warning for most of central Spain, expected to last until Sunday. People refresh themselves on the beach during a hot summer day in Barcelona on Friday. (AP) A boy somersaults into the sea at a beach in Barcelona. (AP) People sunbathe on a beach in Barcelona as much of Spain is on high alert. (AP) People cool off in water fountains in Nice as hot summer temperatures continue in France. The Eiffel Tower is framed by trees as hot summer temperatures continue in Paris. (AP) Two men have died of heat-stroke in the southeastern region of Murcia, a local media report said. In Switzerland, mountain railways reported booming business as city dwellers fled to the Alps. (Reuters) People enjoy a hot summer day on pedalos on Lake Leman during a heat wave in Lausanne, Switzerland. A woman and a child sit on a pontoon on Lac de Joux in Le Pont, Switzerland. A fisherman sails on Lac de Joux in Le Pont on Wednesday. Fishery authorities in the canton of Zurich were combing creeks to rescue fish from suffocation as streams dry up or oxygen levels plunge. A man holds a fishing rod in front of the Mediterranean sea in Barcelona. People escape intense heat having drinks in an ice bar in the German capital Berlin. Further north in Scandinavia, temperatures hit records until a few days ago. (AP) Authorities on both sides of the Baltic Sea, in Sweden and Poland, have warned against swimming due to a huge bloom of toxic algae spreading because of hot temperatures. Meteorologists say temperatures are being driven higher by a hot air mass moving northward from Africa, which is also bringing dust from the Sahara Desert.