LONDON will be hit by an 18C Saharan heat bomb in the coming days, the Met Office has revealed.
Bringing a freezing February to a distinctly mild end, the temperature rise will be felt across the UK – although nowhere will be warmer than the capital as the month draws to a close.
The Met Office said that the weather is going to be “unsettled” this week – with two yellow weather warnings for rain across Scotland on Tuesday – but the rest of the UK seems to be in the all-clear.
Temperatures picked up this weekend, with highs of 16C in the south of England – and the mercury is set to stay in the mid-teens until next weekend.
But don’t set your winter clothes aside for the year just yet – there is a chance of yet more snow returning in March.
A Met Office spokesperson suggested snow could return in early March and that it was “more likely” to strike closer to Easter than Christmas.
They said snowy conditions during March couldn’t be ruled out “meteorologically”, adding: “March generally has more days of snow than November so it’s perhaps not surprising if we get colder weather.”
Follow our weather live blog below for the latest news and updates from around the country
TEMPERATURES GET WARM AFTER COLD MONTH
The warm weather this week comes after a month of freezing temperatures, with severe snowfall across the UK.
The UK’s coldest temperature for 65 years was recorded in Aberdeenshire when locals endured -23C.
SEVERE WEATHER IN SCOTLAND
Scotland and parts of the north will have to endure heavy downfalls of rain with amber and yellow warnings in place.
The Met Office has warned there could be danger to life from midnight tonight until Wednesday with fast flowing and deep floodwater likely.
Homes and businesses could be flooded, causing damage to some buildings and there is a good chance some communities cut off by flooded roads.
Delays and some cancellations to train and bus services are expected with flooding leading to difficult driving conditions and some road closures.
MILD WEATHER BUT RAINY CONDITIONS
Mild weather will continue this week.
However, there will be strong winds and heavy rain for some.
SOUTH OF ENGLAND TO BE AS WARM AS BARCELONA THIS WEEK
Parts of England will be as warm as Barcelona this week, with highs of 17C expected.
However, the North and West is due to see windy and wet conditions especially from tomorrow.
Mr Claydon said mid-teen temperatures are expected to continue across the nation, which seem “especially warm” following the recent freezing weather.
“We’re getting milder and wetter air from the west causing warmer weather all round, but we’re a way off hitting a February record,” he said.
“These mild temperatures are set to stick around through the week with peak temperatures of 14C and 15C in south-east England.”
HEAVY RAIN TONIGHT
Met Office spokesperson Oli Claydon said a band of showers concentrated in central areas of England, and covering parts of east Wales and south-east Scotland, will gradually move away during the day.
But heavier rain will return overnight, which will be largely concentrated in Scotland and north-western areas before moving south-eastwards as it weakens over Tuesday and Wednesday.
FLOODING EXPECTED IN SCOTLAND AS RAIN SWEEPS UK
Homes in Scotland could be hit by floods as a band of heavy rain is set to hit the UK in the coming days.
Scotland will be worst hit by the deluge, and 120mm of water is set to fall over a 36-hour period on Tuesday and Wednesday for areas including Perth, Stirling, and Dumfries and Galloway.
An amber weather warning for rain likely to cause flooding and travel disruption is in place for these regions until midday on Wednesday.
SUNNY SKIES IN WEST AND NORTHWEST
People living in the west and northwest of the UK can expect some sunny skies this afternoon, according to the Met Office.
In summary of what Brits can expect later today, the weather forecaster said rain in the east would start to clear away while those in westerly areas would see some sunshine.
Northwest Scotland would see some scattered showers though
YELLOW WARNING FOR ALL OF NORTHERN IRELAND
The Met Office has issued a yellow weather warning covering all of Northern Ireland.
The warning for heavy rain comes into place at 3am on Tuesday and covers the entire day.
Most areas are expected to get between 15-30mm of rain while some parts could be bombarded with between 40-50mm.
STRONG WINDS TO HIT UK
The Met Office continues: “Strong winds may also affect northern and northwestern areas at times, but elsewhere winds will likely be light and, as a result, fog formation overnight may become more prevalent.
“Temperatures for this period will likely be average or slightly above average for the time of year, although some cold nights with frosts are still possible.”
LONG RANGE FORECAST
The Met Office’s long range weather forecast from the end of this week to March 7 says: “During the last few days of February and the first week of March, many areas of the UK are likely to see more settled conditions.
“Dry conditions with clear or sunny periods are likely, especially in the south of the UK.
“Any unsettled weather with corresponding showers or rain are most likely to occur in the north and northwest of the UK.”
OUTLOOK FOR WEDNESDAY TO FRIDAY
On Wednesday, the weather is set to be windy with rain in the north and west.
Showers are forecast for northern and western areas, according to the Met Office.
It will be ry and sunny in the south and east.
Temperatures will remain mild, especially in the southeast.
NEW AMBER WARNING FOR RAIN IN SCOTLAND
The Met Office has issued a new amber warning for heavy rain across parts of Scotland.
It is in place from 12pm on Tuesday until 12pm on Wednesday.
SPLASHING PEDESTRIANS IS ILLEGAL
A consequence of rain is puddles and with it the inevitable splash onto the pavements.
Splashing pedestrians purposefully is actually illegal. It is an offence to drive “without reasonable consideration for other persons” which includes the deliberate splashing of a pedestrian or even a cyclist.
For doing so you can be prosecuted under Section 3 of the Road Traffic Act 1988 for careless, aggressive or inconsiderate behaviour on the road.
The penalty for which is a £100 fixed penalty notice and three points on your licence.
However, this fine could be raised to £5000 if you were deemed to be driving in a way that “amounts to a clear act of incompetence, selfishness, impatience, and aggressiveness”.
WEATHER FORECAST FOR TUESDAY
The Met Office’s weather forecast for tomorrow says: “Outbreaks of rain, heavy and persistent at times across the north.
“Drier and brighter in the southeast.
“Windy, with severe gales across Scotland. Mild everywhere.”
RISK OF INTERRUPTIONS TO POWER SUPPLIES
Parts of southern England, Wales, and western Scotland will face persistent, heavy rain which will cause flooding and disruption to transport.
Interruptions to power supplies and other services are possible in the affected areas as they battle the February deluge.
WARM WEATHER COULD TRIGGER AN INCREASE IN POLLEN LEVELS
The un-seasonal weather may also cause a spot of bother for hayfever sufferers as the above average temperatures could trigger an increase in pollen levels.
The National Pollen Monitoring Network based at the University of Worcester forecasts fungal spores will be moderate to high until next week Dr Beverley Adams-Groom, chief pollen forecaster, at the NPMN, said: “At this time of year, we usually see hazel and alder tree pollen coming into peak season.
“The pollen is released during mild weather in dry and breezy conditions like those we are experiencing at the moment and which will continue over the coming week.
“The minority of hay fever sufferers who are affected by these pollen types are likely to be affected.”
The Met Office tweeted: “Low pressure to our NW is feeding S’ly winds into the UK from the Canaries, allowing #Saharandust to be drawn N too.
“The recent satellite image below shows this in red.
“You may notice dust deposits on cars & colourful sunrises/sets next few days.”
Temperatures picked up last weekend, with highs of 16C in the south of England – and mercury is set to stay in the mid-teens until next weekend.
The winter snow, ice, and frost may be behind us, with the warm weather set to stay all week across parts of southern England because of a Sahara dust plume.
Saharan dust caused colourful sunsets and sunrises across the east of the UK yesterday.
The dust was brought across the UK by high level winds, the Met Office said.
Here are some pictures taken in the Fens yesterday.
ODDS SLASHED ON WETTEST MARCH ON RECORD
Leading bookmaker Coral has slashed the odds on this March being the wettest since records began to just 2-1 (from 4-1), as many parts of the UK were hit with flood warnings as February enters its final week.
“Temperatures are on the rise but the threat of rain remains on the horizon. We’ve cut our odds on next month being the wettest March since records began,” said Coral’s Harry Aitkenhead.
Coral make this spring odds on already, at 4-5, to be the warmest ever recorded in the UK with temperatures set to continue to rise as March begins.
“The outlook temperature wise remains pleasant and we make it odds on that Brits have their warmest spring on record, with fingers crossed and hopes high for some cracking weather through April and May,” added Aitkenhead.
FLOODS IN WALES
In Wales, footage shared on social media showed a swollen river at Pontypridd, while other videos revealed flooded parts of Carmarthen where the River Towy burst its banks.
Malcolm Rees, 54, a coracle boat maker in Carmarthen, said one of his sheds was submerged in one metre deep floodwater.
A spokesperson for Natural Resources Wales said the areas most affected by flood warnings were in Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion, with some residents evacuated by the fire service in Newcastle Emlyn.
HUNDREDS OF FLOOD WARNINGS IN PLACE
The Environment agency issued 106 flood warnings and alerts throughout England and Wales from Monday that remain in place until Wednesday.
Yellow weather warnings are in place across Scotland as the UK is bracing for an “unsettled” week of heavy rainfall and spells of sunshine.
Heavy downpours and strong winds are set to sweep across western, central, and northern parts of England, but it becomes bright in the west through Monday.
Yesterday, the seafront at West Bay in Dorset was busy with people out exercising.
Sunday was the last day of the February half term holidays during the Covid-19 lockdown.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson is set to announce a roadmap out of lockdown, with more details due to be released today.
FORECAST FOR TONIGHT
The Met Office’s weather forecast for tonight says: “Rain, some heavy, pushing across many northern areas by morning.
“Clear spells elsewhere although low cloud and patchy fog in southeast.
“Becoming windy with gales in the north and west.”
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