Cold snap expected

3 12 2013

The UK is going to see a very short, sharp, cold snap.  From Wednesday night (4th Dec) into Thursday morning (5th Dec) Scotland, northern England and Northern Ireland will see some strong winds, while Scotland will see some wintry showers and snow.  However temperatures will return to normal as we head through the weekend, and be more in line with what should be expected for December.

A rapidly deepening Atlantic depression is expected to move in an easterly direction to the north of Scotland bringing westerly gales, with gusts of 60 to 70 mph extending southwards across northern and some central parts of the UK on Wednesday night and Thursday.  Northern Scotland could see gusts of 80mph, and potentially 90mph for a time.

Because of this the Met Office has issued a Yellow Severe Weather Warning for strong winds. The public should be aware of possible disruption to travel, especially across Scotland, parts of Northern Ireland and Northern England.

The winds are expected to veer northerly and bring the colder arctic air southwards across northern areas before easing into Friday. The winds could exacerbate high tides and may increase the risk of coastal flooding in the Northern and Western Isles and along the East Coast of England.

A Yellow warning for snow is also in place. It runs from 6am Thursday to 12 noon on Friday, covering the northern half of Scotland, snow showers are expected to be most frequent across the Northern Isles, the North Highlands and northern Aberdeenshire.  Low laying areas could see 2 – 5cms of snow and higher altitudes 10 – 20cms. In addition the strong winds could lead to some drifting of snow and possibly blizzard conditions on higher ground.  Icy conditions may also develop on some roads across Scotland on Thursday night and Friday morning.

This winter storm is not expected to be as powerful as those in January 2012 and December 2011

This is expected to be a short-lived cold snap, with temperatures quickly recovering to near normal over the weekend.

Our video explains what to do during a Yellow warning for wind. You can also download a weather warnings widget for your website.





The severe storm this weekend and why it’s not a hurricane

26 10 2013

There is much coverage of the storm heading our way later this weekend with mentions of it being a ‘hurricane’. This is not strictly correct as we don’t get hurricanes in the UK and this is why.

Hurricanes are warm latitude storms; they draw their energy from warm seas and can only begin to form where the ocean is warmer than 26 degrees Celsius or so, and can really only become a major storm when the sea is warmer than 28 degrees Celsius. That’s like a warm bath, so you won’t find one around the UK anytime soon!

Other limitations, like wind patterns in the upper atmosphere and the forces caused by the Earth’s rotation, mean hurricanes are normally found in an area between 8 and 20 degrees north of the equator.

You can find a full explanation of what hurricanes are and how they form on our What are hurricanes? video

The storm which is due to develop tomorrow night and affect the UK during Monday is a mid latitude storm, the sort which affect us through the autumn and winter. These are formed in a very different way – by the meeting of different air masses on what is known as the polar front, leading to low pressure (storms) forming, often around the latitude of the UK.

The storm which is due tomorrow is expected to bring very strong winds and heavy rain, and we are warning of winds gusting 60-80 mph quite widely and locally over 80 mph, especially on exposed coasts, both in the southwesterly winds ahead of the low centre and west to northwesterly winds behind it.

Winds of that strength are classified on the Beaufort scale as ‘hurricane force 12’ but that is not the same as being a hurricane. Winds of this strength could bring down trees or cause structural damage, potentially causing transport disruption or power cuts and we are working closely with the resilience community to ensure they are prepared for the expected conditions.

You can find practical advice about what to do in winter weather on our Get Ready for Winter website.





What to do in heavy rain

14 05 2013

The next few days will see some heavy rain across the country resulting in possible disruption. Yellow alerts have been issued by the Met Office this week for many areas of the UK.

Met Office warnings and what they mean

If a yellow warnings is issued: Be aware.

During a yellow warning for rainfall there may be some minor traffic delays due to slower traffic and outdoor events may be disrupted or cancelled. There may be localised flooding of fields, car parks and recreational land.

When an amber warning is issued: Be prepared.

An amber warning indicates the need to be prepared for some disruption of daily routines and travel only if well prepared as the journey may take longer. Some flooding of homes, businesses and transport connections is possible. Utility services (gas, electricity and water) may also be affected and protecting property will be needed (for example moving possessions upstairs and using sandbags).

A red warning means action must be taken.

It is essential to follow advice from authorities under all circumstances and expect significant disruption. Only take journeys if absolutely essential and carry emergency food and clothing. Red warnings mean there could be widespread flooding of property and severe disruption to travel. There may be some loss of utilities (gas, electricity and water). There may be possible risk to life and the advice of the emergency services needs to be followed.

Check the latest forecast for your area on our severe weather page.

You can also sign up to our severe weather RSS feed or severe weather twitter account for your local area.

For more information on our severe weather warnings service, watch our video guide:

The Environment Agency’s Floodline 0845 988 1188 is available 24 hours a day for flood advice or you can see the latest flood warnings on our website.

For more detailed travel information check the Highways Agency’s website.

Infographic what to do in heavy rain





Latest snow depths and wind speeds – 5 February

5 02 2013

As forecast, unsettled wintry conditions brought snow and strong winds to parts of the UK overnight and this morning.

Eskdalemuir saw the deepest snow, with 14 cm of snow recorded at 10 am this morning, while Aviemore recorded 12 cm.

Many areas also saw strong winds, with a gust of 78 mph recorded at Culdrose, Cornwall and 99 mph recorded at Cairngorm Summit.

Snow depths at 10 am 5 February

TIME SITE NAME AREA ELEVATION SNOW DEPTH ( CM)
10:00 ESKDALEMUIR DUMFRIESSHIRE 236 14
10:00 AVIEMORE INVERNESS-SHIRE 228 12
10:00 DRUMALBIN LANARKSHIRE 245 10
10:00 GLENANNE ARMAGH 161 9
10:00 TULLOCH BRIDGE INVERNESS-SHIRE 249 7
10:00 REDESDALE CAMP NORTHUMBERLAND 211 7
10:00 BALLYPATRICK FOREST ANTRIM 156 5
10:00 SPADEADAM CUMBRIA 285 5
10:00 THOMASTOWN FERMANAGH 72 3
10:00 BINGLEY WEST YORKSHIRE 262 2
10:00 ALBEMARLE NORTHUMBERLAND 142 2
10:00 WADDINGTON LINCOLNSHIRE 68 1
10:00 SHAWBURY SHROPSHIRE 72 1

Maximum gust speeds 5 February

TIME SITE NAME AREA ELEVATION MAX GUST SPEED (mph)
00:00 CULDROSE CORNWALL 76 78
04:00 SCILLY ST MARYS AIRPORT ISLES OF SCILLY 31 75
00:00 CHIVENOR DEVON 6 67
03:00 ISLE OF PORTLAND DORSET 52 66
04:00 JERSEY AIRPORT JERSEY 84 66
03:00 GUERNSEY AIRPORT GUERNSEY 101 64
00:00 CAMBORNE CORNWALL 86.85 62
02:00 SOUTHAMPTON, OCEANOGRAPHY CENTRE HAMPSHIRE 26 62
01:00 SOUTH UIST RANGE WESTERN ISLES 4 62
00:00 AVONMOUTH AVON 9 62
00:00 CARDINHAM, BODMIN CORNWALL 200 61
01:00 TIREE ARGYLL 9 60
03:00 WIGHT: ST CATHERINES POINT ISLE OF WIGHT 20 60
01:00 WIGHT: NEEDLES OLD BATTERY ISLE OF WIGHT 80 60
02:00 YEOVILTON SOMERSET 20 60
01:00 CAPEL CURIG GWYNEDD 216 59
01:00 ABERDARON GWYNEDD 95 59
04:00 ISLAY: PORT ELLEN ARGYLL 17 58
01:00 LERWICK SHETLAND 82 58
00:00 MUMBLES HEAD WEST GLAMORGAN 43 56
01:00 ODIHAM HAMPSHIRE 118 56

Maximum gust speeds – mountain sites

TIME SITE NAME AREA ELEVATION MAX GUST SPEED (mph)
09:00 CAIRNGORM SUMMIT INVERNESS-SHIRE 1237 99
07:00 CAIRNWELL ABERDEENSHIRE 928 86
08:00 AONACH MOR INVERNESS-SHIRE 1130 75
09:00 BEALACH NA BA ROSS & CROMARTY 773 67
04:00 GREAT DUN FELL CUMBRIA 847 56
10:00 GLEN OGLE PERTHSHIRE 564 54

Warnings for ice, snow and wind remain in place in some areas.





Overnight wind speeds – Wednesday 30 January

30 01 2013

Following Met Office amber weather warnings for wind in some parts of the UK yesterday, some high gust speeds were recorded late last night and into the early hours of the morning. The highest gust speed at lower levels was recorded at Fair Isle, Shetland which saw speeds of 86 mph this morning, while the highest gust recorded at a mountain site was 135 mph at Cairngorm Summit.

Max gust speed at lower level sites

Date/time Site name Area Elevation Max Gust Speed (mph)
30/01/2013 06:00 Fair Isle Shetland        57 86
30/01/2013 05:00 Lerwick Shetland        82 84
30/01/2013 07:00 Kirkwall    Orkney          26 82
30/01/2013 01:00 Loch Glascarnoch    Ross & Comarty 269 79
30/01/2013 01:00 Stornoway Airport Western Isles 15 78
30/01/2013 04:00 Wick Airport  Caithness    36 75
30/01/2013 00:00 South Uist Range   Western Isles 4 75
30/01/2013 00:00 Tain Range Ross & Cromarty 4 70
30/01/2013 05:00 Altnaharra Sutherland   81 68
30/01/2013 03:00 Wight: Needles Old Battery Isle Of Wight 80 68

Max gust speed recorded at mountain sites

Date/time Site name Area Elevation Max gust speed (mph)
30/01/2013 00:00 Cairngorm Summit Invernessshire 1237 135
30/01/2013 01:00 Aonach Mor Invernessshire 1130 110
30/01/2013 07:00 Cairnwell Aberdeenshire 928 105
30/01/2013 00:00 Bealach Na Ba Ross & Cromarty 773 101
30/01/2013 02:00 Glen Ogle        Perthshire 564 77

Warnings remain in place for wind in some areas, you can keep up to date with the latest severe weather warnings on our website.





The worst storm in years?

28 01 2013

Various articles in the news today said that the weather over the weekend was the worst storm to hit the UK in years, and that there is more to come this week. There was indeed a very deep area of low pressure in the Atlantic over the weekend. At its deepest, on Saturday 26 January, the central pressure of the depression was 932 millibars and it was sitting some 1,800 nautical miles west of the UK. It came closest to the UK during the day yesterday with a central pressure of 950 millibars but was still around 600 nautical miles to the north west of Scotland.

Satellite image from 26 January 2013

Satellite image from 26 January 2013

To put this into context, the storm that affected the UK on 3 January 2012 had a central pressure of 953 millibars but was centred right on the west coast of Scotland and brought winds in excess of 80 mph to the Central Belt and a gust of over 100 mph in Edinburgh. Property was damaged, as well as trees, and there was disruption on the road network and with ferry crossings. Power supplies were also affected significantly.

The storm in January 2012 was therefore much more disruptive and severe than any wet and windy weather we have seen so far this year.

Much of the recent severe weather has been attributed to the phrase “Weather Bomb”, which is not a perfect meteorological term but is defined as an intense low pressure system with a central pressure that falls 24 millibars in a 24-hour period. This happened to the depression over the Atlantic during the weekend but as it was miles away from the UK its impacts were minimal. A better description can be more directly linked to the meteorological phenomena known as rapid cyclogenesis. This is where dry air from the stratosphere flows into an area of low pressure. This causes air within the depression to rise very quickly and increases its rotation, which in turn deepens the pressure and creates a more vigorous storm.





Updated: Latest snow depths Friday 18 January

18 01 2013

As forecast, many areas of the UK have had heavy snowfall today, particularly in Wales and the south and west of England.

The heaviest snowfall so far has been in Wales, where a red warning is currently in place. Sennybridge in Powys currently has the highest total, with 26 cm of snow recorded at 12 pm today.

somersetsnow

Updated snow depths at 12 pm Friday 18 January

Location Area Elevation Snow depth ( Cm)
Sennybridge Powys 307 26
Dunkeswell Aerodrome Devon 252 15
Filton Avon 59 12
Larkhill Wiltshire 132 11
Liscombe Somerset 348 11
Middle Wallop Hampshire 90 11
Brize Norton Oxfordshire 82 10
Leek, Thorncliffe Staffordshire 298 9
Hereford, Credenhill Hereford & Worcester 76 9
Hurn Dorset 10 6
St Athan South Glamorgan 49 6
Boscombe Down Wiltshire 126 6
Northolt Greater London 33 5
Coleshill Warwickshire 96 5
Aviemore Inverness-Shire 228 5
Boulmer Northumberland 23 5
Trawsgoed Dyfed 63 4
Marham Norfolk 21 4
Shawbury Shropshire 72 4
Scampton Lincolnshire 57 4
Eskdalemuir Dumfriesshire 236 4
Wattisham Suffolk 89 4
Nottingham, Watnall Nottinghamshire 117 4
Wittering Cambridgeshire 73 3
Leconfield Humberside 7 3
Cranwell Lincolnshire 63 3
Dyce Aberdeenshire 65 3
Bingley West Yorkshire 262 3
Odiham Hampshire 118 3
Bridlington Mrsc Humberside 15 3
Heathrow Greater London 25 2
Charlwood Surrey 67 2
Andrewsfield Essex 87 2
Benson Oxfordshire 57 2
Coningsby Lincolnshire 6 2
Church Fenton North Yorkshire 8 2
Rostherne Cheshire 35 2
Albemarle Northumberland 142 2
Redesdale Camp Northumberland 211 2
Aboyne Aberdeenshire 140 2
Yeovilton Somerset 20 1
Aberporth Dyfed 133 1

Snow depths at 2 pm Friday 18 January

Location Area Elevation Snow depth ( Cm)
Sennybridge Powys 307 25
Filton Avon 59 15
Larkhill Wiltshire 132 12
Liscombe Somerset 348 12
Hereford, Credenhill Hereford & Worcester 76 11
Middle Wallop Hampshire 90 11
Brize Norton Oxfordshire 82 11
Leek, Thorncliffe Staffordshire 298 10
Coleshill Warwickshire 96 7
Northolt Greater London 33 7
Boscombe Down Wiltshire 126 7
Shawbury Shropshire 72 7
Hurn Dorset 10 7
St Athan South Glamorgan 49 5
Scampton Lincolnshire 57 4
Nottingham, Watnall Nottinghamshire 117 4
Eskdalemuir Dumfriesshire 236 4
Marham Norfolk 21 4
Yeovilton Somerset 20 4
Heathrow Greater London 25 4
Charlwood Surrey 67 4
Odiham Hampshire 118 4
Wattisham Suffolk 89 4
Trawsgoed Dyfed 63 4
Wittering Cambridgeshire 73 4
Aboyne Aberdeenshire 140 3
Leconfield Humberside 7 3
Cranwell Lincolnshire 63 3
Dyce Aberdeenshire 65 3
Waddington Lincolnshire 68 3
Boulmer Northumberland 23 3
Leeming North Yorkshire 33 3
Bingley West Yorkshire 262 3
Bridlington Mrsc Humberside 15 3
Benson Oxfordshire 57 3
Andrewsfield Essex 87 2
Church Fenton North Yorkshire 8 2
Rostherne Cheshire 35 2
Albemarle Northumberland 142 2
Redesdale Camp Northumberland 211 2
Coningsby Lincolnshire 6 2
Bedford Bedfordshire 85 2

Snow depths at 3 pm Friday 18 January

Location Area Elevation Snow depth ( Cm)
Sennybridge No 2 Powys 307 25
Filton Avon 59 16
Dunkeswell Aerodrome Devon 252 15
Larkhill Wiltshire 132 12
Brize Norton Oxfordshire 82 12
Liscombe Somerset 348 12
Hereford, Credenhill Hereford & Worcester 76 12
Middle Wallop Hampshire 90 10
Leek, Thorncliffe Staffordshire 298 9
Coleshill Warwickshire 96 8
Northolt Greater London 33 8
Boscombe Down Wiltshire 126 7
Shawbury Shropshire 72 7
Hurn Dorset 10 7
Nottingham, Watnall Nottinghamshire 117 6
Heathrow Greater London 25 5
Marham Norfolk 21 5
Odiham Hampshire 118 5
Aviemore Inverness-Shire 228 5
Cranwell Lincolnshire 63 4
Eskdalemuir Dumfriesshire 236 4
Scampton Lincolnshire 57 4
Yeovilton Somerset 20 4
Charlwood Surrey 67 4
Wittering Cambridgeshire 73 4
Wattisham Suffolk 89 4
Trawsgoed Dyfed 63 4
St Athan South Glamorgan 49 4
Benson Oxfordshire 57 3
Leeming North Yorkshire 33 3
Lough Fea Londonderry 225 3
Waddington Lincolnshire 68 3
Bridlington Mrsc Humberside 15 3
Leconfield Humberside 7 3
Bedford Bedfordshire 85 3
Aboyne No 2 Aberdeenshire 140 3
Dyce Aberdeenshire 65 3
Bingley, No 2 West Yorkshire 262 3
Church Fenton North Yorkshire 8 2
Coningsby Lincolnshire 6 2
Andrewsfield Essex 87 2
Rostherne No 2 Cheshire 35 2
Boulmer Northumberland 23 2

Further snowfall is forecast today and tomorrow. Keep up to date with your local forecasts and warnings for the latest information.

Related articles




What to do when heavy snow is forecast

17 01 2013

Make sure you know what to do when severe weather warnings are in place for snow.

The first and most vital thing to do is check local and national weather forecasts and keep up to date with the latest warnings from the Met Office. Check the latest forecast for your area on our severe weather page.

You can also sign up to our severe weather RSS feed or severe weather twitter account for your local area. Keep up to date on social media on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

For more information on our severe weather warnings service, watch our video guide.

When a yellow warning has been issued: be aware

Yellow_snow_iconBe aware of the likely conditions and ensure you access the latest weather forecast for up to date weather information. Be aware that:

  • There may be small amounts of snow lying on roads and pavements so slippery road surfaces are possible.
  • Traffic may move generally slower than normal, and you may wish to allow extra time for your journey.
  • You should take extra care when walking, cycling or driving in affected areas.

When an amber warning has been issued: be prepared

Amber_snow_iconDuring amber warnings be prepared to change your plans. Take precautions where possible and ensure you access the latest weather forecast. Be prepared for:

  • More widespread snow lying on roads and pavements with a number of road closures.
  • Localised disruption to road, rail and air transport with difficult driving conditions likely.  Journeys through affected areas may take longer than usual.
  • Taking extra care when walking, cycling or driving in affected areas.

When a red warning has been issued: take action

Red_snow_iconDuring red warnings keep up to date with the forecast and take action to protect yourself and your property. Take action so you are ready for:

  • Widespread deep snow with many roads closed or impassable and a high risk of drivers becoming stranded.
  • Significant disruption to road, rail and air transport.
  • Risk to personal safety. You should avoid areas that are worst affected and are likely to pose additional risks.
  • Significant disruption to normal day to day life as a result of transport issues and school closures.
  • You should take the advice of local emergency services and local authorities in your area.

For advice on clearing snow and ice from the pavement outside your home or public spaces to prevent slips and falls read the snow code.

Useful links:

UK severe weather warnings

UK local forecasts

The snow code

Get ready for winter weather

UK snow

How does snow form?

Snow forecasting in the UK





Heavy rain brings over 100mm of rain to parts of Scotland – rainfall totals across the UK

21 12 2012

There has been some very wet weather across much of the UK seeing well over an inch of rain in the last 24 hours. The wettest place in the UK, in the 48 hours to 6 am this morning is Tyndrum, Perthshire with 102.4 mm of rain, with 94.6 mm of this falling in the last 24 hours.

The wettest place in England was Cardinham, Cornwall with 62.8 mm, in Northern Ireland was Ballypatrick Forest, Antrim with 57.8 mm and in Wales it was Tredegar Park with 54.4 mm of rain.

Although there will continue to be some patchy outbreaks of rain across eastern parts of Scotland today, generally the rain will continue to ease leaving a drier day for many, before more heavy rain pushes into the southwest of England later this evening and across Scotland tomorrow morning.

48 hour UK Rainfall Totals 19 Dec 0600 am - 21 Dec 0600 am
Stations recording more than 40 mm

SITE NAME AREA PRECIP AMOUNT(mm)
TYNDRUM PERTHSHIRE 102.4
CARTERHOUSE ROXBURGHSHIRE 68.2
CARDINHAM, BODMIN CORNWALL 62.8
SHAP CUMBRIA 61.6
BALLYPATRICK FOREST ANTRIM 57.8
PLYMOUTH, MOUNTBATTEN DEVON 55.6
STRATHALLAN AIRFIELD PERTHSHIRE 54.6
TREDEGAR, BRYN BACH PARK GWENT 54.4
PATELEY BRIDGE, RAVENS NEST NORTH YORKSHIRE 53.8
RAVENSWORTH NORTH YORKSHIRE 53.4
BINGLEY WEST YORKSHIRE 51.8
DUNDRENNAN KIRKCUDBRIGHTSHIRE 50.8
THORNEY ISLAND WEST SUSSEX 49.4
SHOREHAM AIRPORT WEST SUSSEX 49.2
USK MONMOUTHSHIRE 48.4
NOTTINGHAM, WATNALL NOTTINGHAMSHIRE 48.4
CARDIFF, BUTE PARK SOUTH GLAMORGAN 48.2
HURN DORSET 47.8
MURLOUGH DOWN 46.6
THREAVE KIRKCUDBRIGHTSHIRE 45.8
WEST FREUGH WIGTOWNSHIRE 45.6
LEUCHARS FIFE 45
MUMBLES HEAD WEST GLAMORGAN 45
CAPEL CURIG GWYNEDD 44.8
RONALDSWAY ISLE OF MAN 44
BRAMHAM WEST YORKSHIRE 43.6
GLASGOW, BISHOPTON RENFREWSHIRE 43
DISHFORTH AIRFIELD NORTH YORKSHIRE 42.8
HAMPSTEAD GREATER LONDON 41.4
SWANAGE DORSET 41
CAMBORNE CORNWALL 40.8
SENNYBRIDGE POWYS 40.8
TRAWSGOED DYFED 40.4

As the wet weather continues into the weekend we have issued a number of severe weather warnings. It is important people are weather aware by staying up to date with these during this period of unsettled weather. Amber warnings mean you need to be prepared for the weather and take steps to change your plans and protect you and your family or community from the impacts of the severe weather based on the forecast from the Met Office. We’d advise people in the areas affected to expect some disruption and take precautions if they are in an area at risk from heavy rain and flooding.





Last night’s highest wind speeds

25 11 2012

As well as being wet we had some strong winds overnight Saturday into Sunday. Below are some of the highest gusts of wind recorded at Met Office reporting stations:

Station     Maximum gust
St Catherines Point, Isle of Wight 69 mph
Isle of Portland, Dorset 69 mph
Needles Old Battery, Isle of Wight 67 mph
Solent, Hampshire 64 mph
Weybourne, Norfolk 61 mph
Langdon Bay, Kent 61 mph
Shoreham Airport, West Sussex 60 mph
Berry Head, Devon 59 mph
High Bradfield, South Yorkshire 56 mph
Wattisham, Suffolk 56 mph

 

 








Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 5,446 other followers

%d bloggers like this: