System in Atlantic rapidly develops - Scotland braced for 90mph gusts

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    Dave Britton – Met Office | 15:30 PM, Wednesday, 7 December 2011

    Distance travelled ~ 876'413'600 km

    The depression is expected to bring gales and heavy rain from the west for Thursday.

    uk severe weather warnings


    Snow is likely for a time on Thursday morning across parts of central and northern Scotland, particularly affecting higher ground, but with some slushy deposits locally to lower levels, and all parts of the UK will have heavy rain for a time during the day.


    But the main feature of this depression is the gale to storm force winds it will bring. Gusts of 60 to 70 mph likely to become quite widespread across northern and central Britain, but 70 to 80 mph are expected across much of Scotland with 90mph gusts are possible in exposed places, particularly central and southern Scotland. Elsewhere across England and Wales the wind will gusts of 50-60 mph. (Warnings issued by the Met Office)


    latest europe satellite image



    As the storm passes through and moves away to the east of the UK on Friday north-westerly winds will bring in cold air which will see a drop in temperatures. This is expected to bring snow to northern and western parts of the UK, giving accumulations to low levels in the north. Accumulations will tend to be confined to higher ground across north Wales and much of northwest England. Untreated surfaces will also become icy at times. Other parts of the country will see a cold night on Friday with widespread frost.


    The forecast for the rest of the month is for the unsettled weather to continue, with spells of wet and windy weather interspersed with brighter, colder periods when we can expect to see frost and snow showers - the heaviest of any snowfalls are expected across higher ground from North Wales northwards, but we could occasionally see some snow cover at lower levels as well.

    Day 339: UK severe weather

    Distance travelled ~ 871'482'400 km

    Following the news that this Autumn was the 2nd warmest on record, last week saw a return to more normal conditions for the time of year.

    It was a very windy, rainy week with heavy rain and gales every day somewhere in the UK. Tuesday saw gusts of up to 76 knots and 65mm of rain in 24 hours in Glasgow, causing major flooding and the closure of some roads. There were also reports of tornadoes in Stockport. On Wednesday the wind and rain continued with a gust of 97 knots recorded in Cairngorm and surface water flooding in Cornwall.

    Temperatures were closer to normal than of late, dipping to a low of - 5.4  °C at Altnahara on Friday night. Showers turned wintry on higher ground throughout the week in Scotland, and parts of Northern England and Northern Ireland. On Sunday, several inches of snow fell on higher routes in Scotland, and there was a covering of snow as far south as Edinburgh.

    Day 332 Severe weather watch: deep depressions

    Distance travelled ~ 853'365'600 km

    UK and World weather report:

    The UK's recent quiet weather took a dramatic turn last week as fog gave way to gales and heavy rain. The foggy start to the week, with visibility down to below 50m in places in the south and east on Monday and Tuesday.

    Despite a colder night on Tuesday, with a minimum of - 2.3 °C and widespread ground frost across England and Wales, temperatures remained a little above normal throughout the week, with a high of 15.9 °C at Fyvie Castle in Aberdeenshire on Saturday.

    On Thursday, a rapidly deepening area of low pressure moved past the north west of the UK, bringing severe gales over the far north west as well as persistent and increasingly heavy rain that continued into Friday and over the weekend.

    storm force winds thurso, scotland

    Storm force winds hit Scotland over the weekend. Image captured by Debbie Bozkurt Sunday 27 November

    Cassley in Sutherland recorded 66.6mm of rain in 12 hours, gales affected northern Scotland, peaking with a gust of 90mph at Fair Isle on Sunday morning. The storms left about 400 homes without power in Orkney, caused landslides, and A cargo ship sunk after reportedly being rolled over by a wave and breaking in two in the Irish Sea.

    Elsewhere in the world, heavy rain is continuing to cause problems. In the Philippines, six people were killed in flash floods after continuous rains in the area caused local rivers to overflow. In Australia, floods have left thousands cut off in the town of Wee Waa in New South Wales. The town will only be accessible by boat and helicopter for at least a week.

    Meanwhile, Mexico is suffering its worst drought in 70 years. Due to the lack of rainfall the government has forced been to supply water to nearly 2.5 million people across eight states.

    The week ahead


    • A very unsettled week for the whole country, with several deep depressions moving in off the Atlantic.

    uk infrared satellite image


    Latest infrared satellite image of British Isles

    uk forecast rainfall


    • Periods of heavy rain, especially in the west of Scotland, could cause some flooding problems. Also windy at times, with a continued risk of gales. There is risk of snow over the higher ground of northern Britain at times.


    Across the North America:

    • A deep depression is moving eastward across Canada, bringing strong winds and snow to many areas.

    satellite image canada

    GOES-EAST/WEST infrared satellite image 14:45 UTC. Data courtesy of NOAA.

    By Tuesday, it is expected to lie over the Hudson Bay, with particularly windy conditions on its southern flank possibly affecting coastal Ontario, Manitoba and Quebec.

    • Another depression, moving northwards towards the Great Lakes from the Gulf of Mexico over the next few days, will also bring heavy rain to places in between as it passes.

    Across Africa:

    • Cooler than average conditions extending from Saudi Arabia across Sudan, Chad and perhaps even reaching northern Nigeria. Conversely, warmer than average across much of Madagascar.

    Across Asia:

    • A spell of wet weather is expected for Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and the northern Gulf on Monday and Tuesday. Rainfall totals of 40-60 mm are likely, with flash flooding a possibility. This is the first significant rainfall since the spring in this area. It is also unseasonably cold, both in this region and more widely across the Middle East.

    • Some rather windy conditions likely for Oman, especially coastal regions and particularly later in the week, in association with a deep depression. This is also likely to impact on coastal parts of Karnataka, Kerala and Goa in India for the next day or two.

    Across Australasia:

    • Some large temperature variations across southern Australia this week, with south western parts going from cool to warm and south eastern areas swinging from warm to cool.

    • Heavy rainfall is set to continue in Australia and Asia due to a La Nina pattern in the Pacific Ocean.

    Day 325: This week's extreme weather watch

    Distance travelled ~ 835'409'600 km

    It was another mild week across the UK, with maximum temperature reaching the mid teens every day and a high of 16.2 °C recorded at Gravesend on Thursday.

    Provisional figures show that November so far has been very mild across the UK. The UK average temperature for 1-15 November was 9.4 °C, 3.5 °C higher than the long term average.

    We would normally expect the first half of November to be warmer than the second as we transition towards winter (which, meteorologically speaking, starts in December). However, even bearing this in mind, the temperatures seen in the first half of this month have been much warmer than normal.

    Some areas did see lower temperatures overnight, leading to air and ground frost in parts, particularly in the north west. A minimum temperature of -3.6 C was recorded at Drumnadrochit, on Loch Ness, on Wednesday.

    The weekend saw extensive fog form in eastern areas. On Saturday this was very slow to clear parts of Yorkshire, Lincolnshire, Cambridgeshire and the East Midlands. While on Sunday areas from the Vale of York through the East Midlands to southern England saw dense patches of fog with visibility of around 50 metres in places. Fog thinned or lifted into low cloud in many places, however for parts of the Vale of York, Lincolnshire, East Anglia and the London area, it stuck around all day causing some flights to be cancelled at Heathrow Airport.

    It's been a relatively quiet week of weather for the rest of the world. In Bolivia, a rare tornado damaged parts of the city of Cochabamba on Wednesday.

    Thunderstorms moving through the region produced the tornado which reportedly damaged dozens of buildings.

    There's been heavy rain in Taiwan, with some parts of the country seeing over 400mm of rain this week.

    Heavy snowfalls affected parts of the Upper Midwest in the USA where a foot of snow fell on parts of South Dakota. A thick fog in Germany may have been a factor in a 52 vehicle pile up on the Autobahn near Muenster. Three people were killed in the crash and another 35 were injured.

    The week ahead

    The UK:

    • A gradual transition to temperatures closer to average by the end of the week, when windy conditions will dominate with heavy rain at times in the northwest of the UK.

    Across Europe:

    • Temperatures in Turkey and the eastern Mediterranean continue to be cold for the time of year, with hill snow expected at times.

    Across the Americas:


    tropical storm kenneth


    Tropical storm Kenneth is currently 500 Miles SSW of Manzanillo, Mexico, but is expected to move in a westward direction, away from land. This is the latest in the season that a tropical storm has formed in the eastern north Pacific basin since Hurricane Winnie formed on 4 December 1983.

    • The unusually cold conditions are set to continue across Alaska and NW Canada over the next few days, spreading into northern areas of the USA such as North Dakota and Minnesota. Temperatures are 10 Celsius colder than average, remaining well below zero in many places throughout the day. By Tuesday temperatures should rise to nearer normal as low pressure pushes in from the south.

    Across Australasia:

    • New Zealand's South Island may see 250 mm of rain during the early part of the week in parts of Westland and Buller.

    Day 319: UK and world weather report

    Post categories:

    Dave Britton – Met Office | 14:00 PM, Tuesday, 15 November 2011

    Distance travelled ~ 819'651'200 km

    Last week was quiet week weather wise for the UK. Most of the country saw mainly cloudy, drizzly conditions with some mist and fog.

    Despite a few frosty mornings in the north west of Scotland, temperatures remained mild for the time of year. Double figure highs were reached every day and a maximum of temperature of 18.1 °C was recorded on Sunday at Otterbourne, near Winchester, Hampshire.

    Elsewhere in the world, flooding continues to cause havoc in Bangkok, where the death toll has now risen to over 500. The weather has started to ease after months of monsoon rain, but the volume of flood water is continuing to cause problems.

    Floods surround two industrial estates east of Bangkok

    Image credit: NASA

    Heavy rainfall has also affected Italy, where thousands were forced to evacuate around the River Po in Turin when water levels rose by 4 metres. Seven people are thought to have died as a result of the storms and torrential rain in the country.

    Over in North America, severe winter storms have hit both Canada and Alaska. In British Columbia a snow storm caused severe disruption to travel networks and power supplies, with ferries to Vancouver Island forced to stop sailing. Meanwhile, Alaska saw winds of up to 100mph combined with high seas and blizzard conditions. During the storm the rate of ice accretion - the process of ice building up on solid objects - was more than 15.6 inches an hour.

    The week ahead

    The UK:

    • The quiet weather is expected to continue with temperatures remaining generally around or slightly above normal throughout. However, there is the potential for some heavy rain and strong winds across north-western parts of the UK later in the week.

    Across Europe:

    • Low pressure over the eastern Mediterranean brings strong northeasterly winds through the Aegean Sea early in the week. Severe weather warnings have been in place for much of Greece, with storm force winds forecast in some areas. Although the strongest winds are likely to be on Monday, it will stay pretty breezy in the area for the next few days.

    • Bitterly cold weather continues in eastern Turkey, Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan, although temperatures should start to rise from Tuesday.

    Across the Americas:
    • Following the recent storms affecting the west coast of Alaska, the state is set to see temperatures falling dramatically over the next few days to be 10-15 °C below average by Friday. Night time lows of -35 °C look possible in places, with daytime temperatures at times not far above.

    • In South America there's heavy rain, strong winds and some relatively low temperatures for a time in southern Brazil at the start of this week, before the associated low pressure system moves east into the Atlantic around Tuesday.

    Across Africa:
    • The same eastern Mediterranean low pressure that brings strong winds to Greece is also causing lower than average temperatures over large parts of Egypt, mainly the north east, over the next few days, with above average winds and precipitation as well at first.

    Across Asia:
    • A spell of unsettled weather is forecast for the Philippines over the next few days. The system causing this will move into the South China Sea around mid-week and may later affect parts of southern China.

    • Some unseasonably low temperatures are expected in the Himalayas - Tibet, Bhutan and Nepal - with daytime temperatures at Lhasa, Tibet potentially around ten degrees below normal.

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