11 Feb 2014

Next #ukstorm to strike on Wednesday

As southern parts of the UK battle against rising river levels and flooding, the arrival of the next storm on Wednesday will only add to the misery.

The Somerset Levels are still under water, as they have been for a month, with a large stretch of the River Thames covered by severe flood warnings.

Ground, saturated by the copious amount of rain we’ve had this winter, has no capacity to soak up any more water. As a result, rain that falls simply causes surface water flooding or runs straight into rivers, causing them to rise further.


Wednesday’s storm will bring the melange of meteorological hazards that we’ve become accustomed to this winter – heavy rain and severe gales.

In addition, with the air colder than it was last week, some places will see snow – mainly over the hills and mountains in the north.

Heavy rain

A band of heavy rain will sweep northwards across all areas on Wednesday, with some snow falling over the hills and mountains from north Wales northwards.

london_rain_g_wpThe latest information suggests that 20-40mm of rain will widely fall in southern and western areas, with as much as 50mm over the hills, mountains and moors.

In terms of snowfall, accumulating snow is likely to be confined to the hills of Scotland, Northern Ireland, northern England and Wales. However, there could be a brief spell of snow at sea level too.

Severe gales

There is still an element of uncertainty with the precise path that the storm will take, which will determine which places see the strongest winds.

stormy_lighthouse_g_wpAt the moment, it looks like Wales along with northern and western parts of England will see the strongest wind gusts, with 60-70mph widely, but locally 80-90mph for coasts and hills.

This strength of wind will be disruptive, potentially bringing down trees and power lines, as well as causing travel problems.

Elsewhere it is likely to be windy too, although gusts will tend to be in the range of 40-60mph.

Any sign of a respite?

After Wednesday’s storm, it looks like there’ll be another spell of rain and gales this weekend, which will only exacerbate the flooding situation.

However, early next week, some of the weather computer models are showing a temporary respite from the stormy weather, with a few days of drier weather and lighter winds.

At the moment, I’m not completely confident that this will happen. Given how volatile the weather is at the moment, there’s a good chance this may change.

As ever, I’ll keep you informed with the latest here on my blog. I’ll also be posting regular updates on Twitter – @liamdutton

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