Historic heat in Western Europe

The jet stream has carried hot air from northern Africa across western Europe which is shattering all-time record highs in numerous countries.

The second extreme heat wave this summer has set new maximums in Belgium at 38.9 C, the Netherlands at 39.2 C and Germany at 40.5 C.

Bordeaux, France reached 41.2 C on Tuesday which was its highest temperature ever.

Thanks to the urban heat island effect, major cities are more prone to hot weather than rural areas and don’t cool down that much overnight.

On Thursday, the UK Met Office believes Britain could smash its current historic high of 38.5 C recorded in Faversham in August 2003.

Furnace Friday

HotUK

Forecast highs in the UK for 27 July 2018 (Met Office)

The British, like Canadians, often give names to extreme weather events and ‘Furnace Friday’ is a fine example.

Meteorologists were expecting the all-time heat record of 38.5 C from 2003 would fall yesterday but thunderstorms rolled through and cooled things down.

Nevertheless, the UK Met Office reports a maximum of 34.7 C at Tibenham Airfield, Norfolk while it reached 35.3 C in Faversham, Kent – the hottest high of 2018 so far.

The heat wave has turned grass brown, triggered water restrictions, disrupted rail services and prompted a warning from officials to stay out of the sun.

Extreme weather closes out 2015

north pole

Image Courtesy CNN

The North Pole climbs above freezing, deadly tornadoes strike Texas, extreme heat bakes Australia and historic floods hit Britain and the American Midwest – the world is filled with extreme weather as it welcomes 2016.

A powerful and destructive North Atlantic low-pressure system brought eastern Canada an unusually warm holiday period, climbing to a spring-like 16°C in Montreal on Christmas Eve.

This was followed by heavy snow from Ontario to the Maritimes.

In the United States, tornadoes and floods left almost 50 dead.

The mighty Mississippi River has already exceeded overflow levels by four metres in some areas.

Scientists say the common cause of these events is a strong El Nino, a weather phenomenon which emerges every few years on average.

Record rainfall has brought unprecedented flooding to England and Scotland and Britain’s mean December temperature was a record-breaking 8°C, smashing the previous high of 6.9°C set in 1934.

With El Nino showing little sign of running out of steam, many scientists say 2016 could be even warmer than 2015.

Wind, rain storm batters northern Europe

Waves crash against the seafront at Dawlish in Devon, England, 28 October 2013 (Reuters) REUTERS/Stefan Wermuth

Waves crash the seawall at Dawlish in Devon, England, 28 October 2013 (Reuters)

Hurricane strength winds battered Britain, northern France, the Netherlands and Scandinavia on Monday, cutting power and hampering air and rail travel.

Gusts of up to 160 km/h lashed southern England and Wales – the worst in a decade according to forecasters.

Thousands of London commuters were stuck at home after train and Tube lines were forced shut by toppled trees and power failures.

Reports say more than a dozen people have been killed so far in the powerful autumn storm.

Britain battered by storms

Saltcoats, Scotland, UK, 08 Dec 2011 (Rutherford photo)

Stormy weather is expected to continue across England and Wales this week while parts of Scotland have been issued snowfall warnings.

Strong winds brought down trees and power lines on Monday night as gusts reached 110 km/h in southern England.

The UK Met Office warned that snow could fall on higher ground in parts of central and northern Britain.

The unsettled weather follows storms last week which left thousands of homes without electricity and led to widespread school closures.

Heat wave in UK

Brighton, England, UK, 01 October 2011

Temperatures seldom reach 30 C in the United Kingdom in July let alone early October but it did happen yesterday.

The record for Britain’s hottest October day was broken Saturday as temperatures reached 29.9 C in Gravesend, southeast England.

Britain has been enjoying an unseasonable autumn heatwave over the past week as a southerly wind brought warm air northwards taking temperatures higher than in Athens, Barcelona and Los Angeles.

Beaches along the English southern coast were packed with daytrippers making the most of the good weather.

The Royal Horticultural Society said strawberries and rhododendrons were among the plants seen blooming at its flagship garden in Surrey, southeast England, when they were not expected to flower again until next spring.