Double whammy of ‘severe’ heavy snow and floods to bring more chaos this week
A double whammy of “severe” heavy snow and floods is to plunge the UK into cripplingly cold chaos in the coming days.
The Met Office warns a chilling blast of Arctic air is set to grip Britain, dragging in its wake torrential rain and up to 20cm of snow in some parts of the nation.
The forecaster warns up to seven inches (20cm) of snow is set to fall across parts of the UK in the coming days, along with the band of heavy rain which could lead to flooding.
The Met Office has issued yellow severe weather warnings for severe snow on Thursday and Friday in parts of northern England and Scotland.
There are four severe weather warnings in place tomorrow.
Most of Northern Ireland and areas in north-west England could see flooding as 20-30mm of rainfall is possible from Wednesday evening.
People living in the affected areas should expect delays and cancellations to public transport, and flooding to homes and businesses, the Met Office said.
The whole of Northern Ireland is covered in a weather warning for heavy rain, which warns of flooding and transport disruption.
This runs from now until 9am tomorrow.
It warns: “Heavy rain will spread across Northern Ireland this evening, lasting through the night before turning lighter on Thursday morning.
“Rainfall accumulations of 20-30mm are expected quite widely, with around 40mm likely over hilly regions.
“With saturated ground, this will be enough to bring some flooding issues.”
What to expect
Spray and flooding on roads will make journey times longer
Bus and train services affected with journey times taking longer
A few homes and businesses flooded
Meanwhile, a weather warning for snow from 4am tomorrow to 3pm tomorrow covers North East England; North West England; SW Scotland, Lothian Borders; Strathclyde and Yorkshire & Humber.
It warns: “A band of rain will move north on Thursday and turn to snow over high ground.
“Snow is likely to low levels at times, but will mostly settle over higher ground above 200 m with 2-5 cm likely quite widely, while some places above 300 m may see 10-15 cm.
“Less cold air following the snow could lead to some thawing and localised surface water flooding on a few roads.”
What to expect
Some roads and railways likely to be affected with longer journey times by road, bus and train services
Scotland looks set to be pummelled by the white stuff, as a severe weather warning for heavy snow runs from 4am tomorrow to 9am on Friday.
It covers Central, Tayside & Fife; Grampian; Highlands & Eilean Siar and Strathclyde.
It warns: “A band of snowfall will push northeast into this region during the early hours of Thursday and become slow-moving before clearing during Friday morning.
“Snow may fall to lower elevations for a time with some locations seeing several cm by Friday morning.
“Above 200 m elevation significant and prolonged snowfall is possible throughout Thursday before easing on Friday morning with the potential for 15-20 cm to accumulate which may lead to transport disruption.”
What to expect
Some roads and railways will be affected with longer journey times by road, bus and train services. Some services may be cancelled and there is a small chance of stranded vehicles and passengers.
There is a slight chance that some rural communities could become cut off
There is a small chance that power cuts will occur and other services, such as mobile phone coverage, may be affected
Meanwhile an expanse of the North West region, including Liverpool, Blackpool and Stoke-on-Trent is covered by the fourth severe weather warning, for heavy rain.
It covers East Midlands – Derbyshire; North West England; West Midlands – Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.
It warns: “Heavy rainfall will likely lead to some minor transport disruption and flooding.
“Rain will arrive across northwest England on Wednesday evening and turn heavy overnight into Thursday.
“During this time 20-30mm is likely to fall quite widely across the area, with as much as 50-60mm possible over the hills.
“Some of this may fall as snow over the higher parts of the Pennines.
“Overnight into Friday, the rainfall will become much lighter and more patchy in nature as the rain band pushes southeast.”
What to expect
Flooding of a few homes and businesses is likely
Bus and train services probably affected with journey times taking longer
Spray and flooding on roads probably making journey times longer
The Environment Agency had 12 flood warnings in place on Wednesday afternoon, stretching from the Midlands to the North East, meaning immediate action is required.
There is some good news for a few lucky Brits though, as temperatures will increase in most areas as milder air moves in from the Atlantic, causing a “battleground” as it combines with colder air in the north.
Parts of southern England and Wales could see “spring-like” weather, with temperatures rising as high as 14C (57F).
It comes after large swathes of the UK were left blanketed in snow last weekend.
The Met Office said the UK had experienced its snowiest spell since late January 2019, when 20 weather stations in England recorded accumulations of 5cm or more for three days consecutively.
Tom Morgan, a Met Office forecaster said: “More milder conditions are set to move in from the Atlantic on Wednesday evening and will lead to a sort of battleground with the cold air in the north.
“This will cause some of the rain and snow which will impact areas across northern England and Scotland.
“Northern Ireland will see around 30mm of rainfall, while parts of north-west England could experience flooding, as the ground is already very saturated and the rivers are higher than usual”.
Mr Morgan also said those in Scotland and in areas around the Pennines will see heavy snowfall lasting until Friday.
He added: “Those travelling in snowy conditions should be wary of disruption to the roads and public transport, as much as 20cm could fall in the worst affected areas so people should be careful.
“Temperatures will be close to 0C in the coldest regions, while parts of southern England and Wales could reach spring-like temperatures, even as high as 14C.
“So there’s quite a disparity depending on where you live”.