18 Feb 2014

UK floods: images from space

During the past two months, the UK has been battered by storm after storm, bringing heavy rain, severe gales and flooding.

A powerful jet stream, racing above the Atlantic five miles up, has been spawning these vigorous areas of low pressure and catapulting them towards us.

The end result has been the windiest December on record, the wettest January for England and Wales since records began in 1766, and flooding that has gone on for two months in some parts of the country.

Nasa satellites circle the earth constantly, snapping pictures of our planet below and act as an important record of how our landscape responds to the man-made and natural phenomena scouring the surface.

In recent days, a few amazing images have been released by Nasa that show the scale of the flooding and one of the storms that caused it.

River flooding

The top image below shows the rivers Thames and Severn on 19 February 2013. Given that there is no flooding present, you can only just about make them out.

However, the bottom image below was taken on 16 February 2014. It shows how much the rivers have flooded – sending water well beyond where it would normally be.



#ukstorm from space

The image below shows the storm that slammed into the UK last week, on Wednesday 12 February.


The well-defined spiral of cloud shows how organised this storm was – efficiently spinning around and delivering damaging winds.

Aberdaron, on the north west coast of Wales, recorded hurricane-force winds, with an average wind speed of 81mph and a gust of 108mph.

This led to the Met Office issuing its highest tier red warning for wind for the first time in two years.

The storm also delivered more heavy rain, which contributed to worsening the flooding situation for southern England and parts of the Midlands.

You can get the latest forecast for your area on the Channel 4 Weather website. I also post regular update on Twitter – @liamdutton

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