Meteorologists downplayed fears yesterday that Greece will be hit by a dangerous heat wave this week, after temperatures reached 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit) in Italy yesterday and contributed to the deaths of at least five elderly people over the weekend. «The situation is not a cause for concern since the circulation of the atmosphere will not allow the temperature to rise too much and the hot spell will not last too long,» Dimitris Ziakopoulos, the head of forecasting at the National Meteorological Service (EMY), told Kathimerini yesterday. He said Friday and Saturday would be the hottest days this week, with temperatures reaching 38 degrees Celsius (100F). Greece benefits from having a much lower humidity rate (between 25 and 35 percent) than surrounding countries, where the level of humidity can hit 70 percent, Ziakopoulos added. According to EMY’s long-term forecasts, Greece is not expected to suffer very high temperatures over the next two months.